A man convicted of killing two people in 1991 on Wednesday became the third inmate executed in Florida since the state resumed carrying out the death penalty after a hiatus.
Patrick Hannon, 53, who was convicted of fatally shooting Robert Carter and slashing the throat of Brandon Snider in 1991, was put to death with a chemical injection on Wednesday.
When Hannon expressed his remorse in the execution chamber, a relative of Snider’s whispered, “Bulls—-” and cursed him again before she waved goodbye as he was being executed, the Tampa Bay Times reported.
Hannon was pronounced dead at 8:50 p.m. at Florida State Prison in Starke, the office of Florida’s governor said. The execution was carried out shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court denied a pair of last-minute appeals by lawyers for the inmate.
Hannon was the third inmate put to death since the state resumed executions in August, following changes made to its death penalty sentencing law. The law now requires a unanimous jury vote for a death sentence.
The U.S. Supreme Court had previously found that Florida’s old sentencing law, which did not require unanimity, to be unconstitutional. However, the new sentencing law did not affect Hannon’s case because the state’s high court ruled that those decided before 2002 were not eligible for relief.
Hannon was convicted in 1991 of two counts of first-degree murder for the slayings of Snider and Carter.
It was in January 1991 when Hannon and two other men went to Snider’s apartment in Tampa.
Hannon’s friend, Jim Acker, initially attacked Snider with a knife, according to authorities. Prosecutors said the attacks were motivated by Snider’s vandalizing of Acker’s sister’s apartment. Snider was “eviscerated” by the initial stabbing, according to court documents, and Hannon sliced his throat, nearly cutting off the victim’s head.
Snider’s roommate, Robert Carter, was also home and fled the violence to an upstairs bedroom, where Hannon dragged him out from under a bed and shot him six times, the jury found.
Hannon’s jury recommended death unanimously after finding him guilty of both killings.
His requests for a halt to his execution to the Florida Supreme Court have been denied. Hannon had asked for a new sentencing phase, citing recent changes to Florida’s death sentencing system.
Florida Supreme Court Justice Barbara Pariente, who dissented from the rest of the court, wrote that the jury was not given enough information to make an informed decision in Hannon’s sentencing phase.