Death-row inmate Carey Dean Moore will be executed at 10 a.m. Aug. 14 at the Nebraska State Penitentiary in Lincoln, the Nebraska Department of Corrections has announced.
Moore's execution will be the first in Nebraska since 1997 and the state's first using lethal injection. During a four-year period in the mid-1990s, Nebraska put three condemned prisoners to death.
The first two of those executions — Harold Lamont Otey in 1994 and John Joubert in 1996 — were carried out just after midnight.
When Otey was executed, an estimated 1,200 to 1,500 people gathered at the Penitentiary to either celebrate or protest his pending death. The two groups were separated by a makeshift snow fence, but screamed and cursed at each other, chanted, held up signs and lit firecrackers and sparklers.
When Joubert was put to death two years later, about 700 to 800 people turned out, many of them shouting and holding signs.
The prisons department shifted to a 10 a.m. execution in 1997 when Robert Williams was put to death. The crowd that gathered that day was about 80 people and was reported to be much more subdued, compared with the "circus" of the 1994 and 1997 death watches.
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Moore's August execution date is on a Tuesday, a workday for many people.
Moore received a death sentence for the shooting deaths of Reuel Van Ness Jr. and Maynard Helgeland in Omaha in 1979.
In a news release announcing the time of the Moore's execution, the department gave information on the number of witnesses that would be allowed by state law, but did not announce who they would be.
State law allows three witnesses to attend on behalf of Moore, in addition to one member of the clergy. Up to three witnesses may also attend on behalf of the victims’ families, the Corrections Department said.
In addition, Corrections Director Scott Frakes can designate up to six more people to witness the execution, of which two must be professional members of the Nebraska news media.