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Authorities in Oaklahoma have executed a man convicted of killing his infant daughter — the sixth prison inmate to be executed since the state resumed carrying them out in October 2021.
Benjamin Cole ‘s lawyers did not dispute that he killed his nine-month-old child Brianna in 2002, but argued that he was severely mentally ill and had a growing lesion on his brain that had worsened in recent years.
“Ben lacked a rational understanding of why Oklahoma took his life today, ” Cole’s attorney Tom Hird said in a statement after the execution.
“As Oklahoma proceeds with its relentless march to execute one mentally ill, traumatised man after another, we should pause to ask whether this is really who we are, and who we want to be. ”
But baby Brianna’s maternal aunt Donna Daniel plus uncle Bryan Young, who witnessed the execution, said they were disappointed it took more than 20 years for Cole’s execution to be carried out.
“Give me a break, ” Mr Young said.
“We should not have to wait 20 years for a nine-month-old baby to get justice. ”