The state of Tennessee has executed a man convicted of killing his wife decades ago at a camping center he managed in Memphis.
Donnie Edward Johnson, 68, was executed by lethal injection on Thursday night inside a maximum-security Nashville prison for the 1984 suffocation of his wife, Connie Johnson.
In his dying moments, the religious inmate uttered a long prayer, asking for forgiveness.
He asked the warden if he could sing, and he sang two hymns. The last words observers could hear were 'no more dying here.' He was pronounced dead at 7.37pm.
Johnson had initially blamed his wife's slaying on a work-release inmate who confessed to helping dispose of the body and who was granted immunity for testifying against Johnson.
Governor Bill Lee announced Tuesday that he would not intervene, following 'prayerful and deliberate consideration' of Johnson's clemency request.
Johnson's legal team had asked the state for a reprieve, claiming that he turned his life around s from 'a liar, a cheat, a con man and a murderer' to an ordained elder in the Seventh-day Adventist Church 'with a flock in prison.'
Religious leaders, including the president of the worldwide Seventh-day Adventist Church, to which Johnson belongs, had asked Lee to spare Johnson's life.
Don Johnson (left), 68, was executed by lethal injection on Thursday night inside a maximum-security Nashville prison for the 1984 suffocation of his wife, Connie Johnson (right).