Ohio Rejects Death Row Inmate Dennis McGuire's Organ Donation

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

Convicted killer Dennis McGuire sought a reprieve from his Thursday execution so that he could donate his organs.

The state of Ohio rejected his request because McGuire was unable to identify a family member who would receive the organs.

Gov. John Kasich, R-Ohio, granted an eight-month stay in November to child killer Ronald Phillips, who wants to donate a kidney to his mother. State officials are currently studying the feasibility of that proposal, according to NBC News.

McGuire, 53, is set to be executed Thursday with an untested drug combination because of the national shortage of the drug pentobarbital. His lawyers argued “he will suffocate to death in agony and terror” if the state uses a cocktail of the sedative midozolam and the painkiller hydropmorphone.

A federal judge ruled Monday that the injection will not pose a substantial risk of pain to McGuire.

"Ohio is free to innovate and to evolve its procedures for administering capital punishment,” wrote Judge Gregory Frost.

McGuire was convicted of the kidnapping, rape and aggravated murder of pregnant 22-year-old Joy Stewart in 1989.

He was moved to the death house at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

Phillips, 40, would have been the first person executed with the untested cocktail in November had he not been granted a stay. He was convicted of the 1993 rape and murder of the 3-year-old daughter of his girlfriend in Akron.

Sources: Newser, NBC News