AG requests execution date 'forthwith' for Miss.'s longest-serving death row inmate

Richard Gerald Jordan was convicted in the 1976 kidnapping and killing of a Gulfport banker's wife

By Margaret Baker
The Sun Herald

BILOXI — The Attorney General's Office has filed a motion requesting an execution date "forthwith" — on or before Aug. 27 — for Richard Gerald Jordan, convicted in the 1976 kidnapping and killing of a Gulfport banker's wife.

The motion, filed Tuesday with the state Supreme Court, paves the way for the execution of Jordan, 68, Mississippi's longest-serving death row inmate.

The Attorney General's Office had agreed to wait until a replacement drug was found for one of the drugs used in the cocktail administered to inmates to kill them.

Jordan had filed suit to stop his execution by challenging the lethal cocktail, which he says is experimental and could cause great pain. He questioned whether the state could mix a safe and effective form of pentobarbital as an anesthetic.

When asked if a replacement drug had been found for the cocktail, the Attorney General's office sent the Sun Herald the following statement:

"The Mississippi Department of Corrections amended its lethal injection protocol today to include the use of midazolam. MDOC can no longer obtain sodium thiopental or pentobarbital due to efforts by death penalty opponents who have put pressure on drug manufacturers to cease production of or to no longer supply drugs to departments of correction for use in lethal injections. The use of midazolam in lethal injections was recently found to be constitutional and not a violation of the 8th Amendment..."

Jordan killed Edwina Marter execution style Jan. 11., 1976, after calling Gulf National Bank Gulfport and learning her husband, Charles Marter, was a senior official there. Jordan found the Marters' home address, went to the home and kidnapped her as her 3-year-old son slept in a bedroom. He drove to De Soto National Forest and he killed her, but called Charles Marter demanding a $25,000 ransom in exchange for her safe return. He was in escaping a taxi with the ransom money when authorities arrested him in a roadblock.

Jordan confessed to killing Edwina Marter and told authorities where to find her body.

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