TERRE HAUTE, Ind.–Wesley Purkey was executed Thursday morning for the rape, murder and dismemberment of 16-year-old Jennifer Long, of Kansas City, in 1998.
Purkey, who was 68, from Lansing, Kansas, died at 8:19, said a news release from the federal Bureau of Prisons.
“I deeply regret the pain and suffering I caused to Jennifer’s family,” he said, when given a chance to say final words. “I am deeply sorry. I deeply regret the pain I caused to my daughter, who I love so very much. This sanitized murder really does not serve no purpose whatsoever.”
Purkey’s execution was the second at the prison in Terre Haute, this week.
It was the second federal execution since 2003. Daniel Lewis Lee was executed Tuesday morning for the murder of an entire family in Arkansas, in 1996.
Purkey’s lawyers argued he did not understand why he was being put to death, due to advanced Alzheimer’s disease. The legal battle ended with a ruling from the Supreme Court of the United States, 5-4, in favor of letting the execution move forward.
“Proceeding with Purkey’s execution now, despite the grave questions and factual findings regarding his mental competency, casts a shroud of constitutional doubt over the most irrevocable of injuries,” wrote Justice Sonia Sotomayor, for the dissenting side.