Ohio man is first executed with lone dose of pentobarbital
Johnnie Baston was convicted of the murder of a Toledo store owner.
March 10th, 2011
12:50 PM ET

Ohio man is first executed with lone dose of pentobarbital

Johnnie Baston on Thursday became the first person in the United States executed with the single-dose drug pentobarbital.

Pentobarbital, a barbiturate that has been used in animal euthanasia and as a mild anesthetic in humans, was used in a U.S. execution for the first time in December, when it was administered as the first drug in a three-drug cocktail used in a lethal injection given to an Oklahoma inmate.

Sodium thiopental is the normal drug used in such lethal injections, but a nationwide shortage of the chemical has forced some states to scramble for possible substitutes.

In 2009, Ohio became the first state to perform an execution with a single drug, using a single dose of sodium thiopental.

Baston was pronounced dead at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at the Southern Ohio Correctional Institution in Lucasville, the state Department of Corrections said.

He received the death sentenced for the 1994 murder of Toledo store owner Chong Hoon Mah, a South Korean immigrant who was shot in the head at close range.

“For a long time I didn’t see a lot of value in myself,’’ Baston said Thursday in the death chamber, the Toledo Blade reported. “It wasn’t until this moment, till I had to go through this ordeal, that I have seen so much love from so many people, letters from people all over the world, and even Ohio.’’

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Filed under: Crime • Death Penalty • Ohio
soundoff (464 Responses)
  1. Doug

    Should be a rope ! Just getter done and move on to the next !

    March 11, 2011 at 1:03 am | Report abuse |
  2. Doug

    I have read all your stuff, and done everything possible to kiss your ass, and an unable to post !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 11, 2011 at 1:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      Disreguard the message about not being able to post ! Thank You !

      March 11, 2011 at 1:06 am | Report abuse |
  3. Myrtlebeachmohican

    Should've used a louisville slugger baseball bat.
    Think theyre like 20 bux at walmart

    March 11, 2011 at 2:15 am | Report abuse |
  4. Judas

    I know cows die everyday, though i had never witnessed it. i knew they felt.

    March 11, 2011 at 3:28 am | Report abuse |
  5. heidi-ho

    Ok say they abolish the death penalty for good in this country? Then theres gonna have to be more room to house all these life without parole sentences. More taxpayers dollars, building more prisons. When will it ever end? Government saying they cant afford the prisons they have now. More prisons means more guards means more taxpayers dollars. Come on people! look at the whole picture before you make comments.

    March 11, 2011 at 3:54 am | Report abuse |
  6. Shoooo

    I let a stinker. Shoooo it stinks. : ]

    March 11, 2011 at 4:22 am | Report abuse |
  7. Judas

    the truth it stinks but, who cares? i say -you did him a favor. he lived 17 years in prison before he was executed. they feed him well. i took a class in college & the teacher told us that it was better to take it out the prison system for some people. because it will create more violence & will cost the government a larger amount of us dollars. give them a small break & see if it goes better. people can be more productive if we give them a chance

    March 11, 2011 at 5:04 am | Report abuse |
  8. BillyD1953

    What a country! So, finding new ways to execute people is what passes for progress in the American so-called justice system?

    March 11, 2011 at 8:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Nighthhaawk

      Hey! Beats Ol' Sparky!

      March 11, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  9. Jack

    If someone has comitted a crime henious enough to receive the death penalty, we shouldn'd be that concerned with their comfort in their execution. As far as I'm concerned, hanging is good enough.

    March 11, 2011 at 8:14 am | Report abuse |
  10. Bill

    The innocent must be protected and convicted (found guilty) felons, of murder and equal crimes, must be eliminated. The legal system aids in the drama and often gives the convicted criminals positive publicity.....what message are we sending other potential felons? The cost of a convicted felon for over 15 years before execution, helathy able bodied inmates convicted of a lesser crime not paying their way......this is a terrible cost and more importantly the system may be an enabler to potential criminal minds. We never want to be inhumane nor stupid about the process......convicted criminals cannot have equal rights and they must meet the consequences when not cooperative......break the rules and there will be consequences......it's absolutely stupid to have rules if there are not consequences when rules are broken! We must be tough within the justice system in protecting the innocent!! When convicted it's like declaring WAR rules of engagement must be enforced without politics......WAR is an ugly word and inncocent people being victimized is too!

    March 11, 2011 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  11. Souflikar

    I guess pentobarbital is a reasonable facsimile. Now that we have determined that it is, let's get to work using some.

    March 11, 2011 at 8:50 am | Report abuse |
  12. john

    took to long......should be done no more than 5 years after sentence....

    March 11, 2011 at 8:57 am | Report abuse |
  13. will III


    March 11, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
  14. Greg

    I don't understand the whole debate over finding a drug to execute someone painlessly. There is so much money and time wasted over this topic. Do you think these people on death row cared the slightest about the pain they caused to their victims? How cheap and easy would it be to put them up against a wall and shoot them like it was done in the good old days?? Bullets are cheap...

    March 11, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Nighthhaawk

      I say execute the perp in the same manner as their victims! ..might give them pause!

      March 11, 2011 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  15. Iron Cross

    Arrest black babies before they become criminals.
    No seriously, what us the point of an execution, do few death cases are overturned.
    The cases are a great example of the economic principle of diminishing returns.

    And if using one drug solves a mystery of death made easier great. But the result is the same. So don't bring it up unless it is admitted in the article that the truth is to stir up debate about the death penalty in the first place.

    March 11, 2011 at 10:27 am | Report abuse |
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