The first Mississippi execution in nine years is set to kill a man

JACKSON, Miss (AP) – A man who killed his estranged wife and terrorizes their family is due to receive a deadly injection on Wednesday night in Mississippi and will be the first person executed in that state after 2012.

Prosecutors said David Neal Cox shot Kim Kirk Cox in a 2010 home in Sherman’s small town and allowed Kim to bleed for several hours as she sexually abused her daughter three times in front of her dying mother.

Cox, 50, gave up all appeals and left court papers in which he called himself “worthy of death.” His execution is scheduled for 6 p.m. at the CST Mississippi State Penitentiary in Parchman.

Mississippi and other states have had difficulty finding deadly injectable drugs as drug companies began to block the use of their products in the execution of death sentences.

The Mississippi Department of Corrections revealed in court papers earlier this year that it had acquired three drugs for a lethal injection protocol: midazolam, a sedative; vecuronium bromide, which paralyzes muscles; and potassium chloride, which stops the heart.

Mississippi Correctional Commissioner Burl Cain told the Associated Press on Tuesday that the drugs listed in the court documents are those designed for use in executions. He did not say where the department obtained them.

“The law said we don’t have to disclose it,” Cain said.

A mental adviser is available to Cox before the execution, the commissioner said.

Republican Governor Tate Reeves has no plans to grant an amnesty or delay the execution, his spokesman said Tuesday. Death Penalty Action, which opposes executions, had asked Reeves to intervene.

“David Cox abandons his petitions and calls for his execution. This means state-sponsored suicide,” the group said in the petition. “It’s not about him. It’s about us. In what other situation in Mississippi is a prisoner dictating his sentence?”

Mississippi carried out six executions in 2012. No other executions are planned in the state after Cox, even though there are more than 30 people on death row in the state.

In 2012, Cox pleaded guilty to murdering his wife in a shooting two years earlier. He also pleaded guilty to several other charges, including sexual harassment. The jury sentenced him to death.

Among those following the execution is Cox’s daughter, 23-year-old Lindsey Kirk. He was 12 years old when he sexually abused him in front of his wounded mother three times as he held them and one of his younger brothers hostage on the night of May 14 and 15, 2010.

Kim Cox’s father, retired law enforcement officer Benny Kirk, described David Cox as “bad.” Benny Kirk said David Cox called that night and said he shot Kim. Benny Kirk talked on the phone with her daughter and she said to her, “Dad, I’m going to die.”

Police besieged the house and tried to get David Cox to release his wife and two children. Kim Cox was dead when the ordeal ended after more than eight hours.

Lindsey Kirk told the Associated Press last week that David Cox had sexually assaulted her for a few years while her mother was away from home, and that she threatened to kill them if this told anyone.

While living with her grandparents in the summer of 2009, Kirk sent a text message to her mother telling her of her stepfather’s beatings. Shortly afterwards, David Cox was arrested and charged with legal rape, sexual harassment, child abuse and possession of methamphetamine. He was released in April 2010 without trial. Kim Cox received a restraining order against her, and she moved into her sister’s home.

It is still unclear whether David Cox was responsible for the disappearance of his brother’s wife, Felicia Cox, in 2007. He was last seen in the neighborhood. Her daughter Amber Miskelly recently told WTVA-TV that David Cox was the last person to see her mother alive. Felicia Cox’s body was never found and no one has been charged with her disappearance.


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