Benjamin Cole, Oklahoma


Update: Monday, October 5, 2015 12:19 pm EDT

Benjamin Robert Cole, Sr., was scheduled to be executed at 3 pm CST, on Wednesday, October 7, 2015, at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester, Oklahoma. His execution has been stayed following a request by the state's Attorney General Scott Pruitt. Fifty-year-old Benjamin has been convicted of the murder of his nine-month-old daughter Brianna on December 20, 2002. Benjamin has spent the last 10 years on Oklahoma’s death row.

The execution of Benjamin has been stayed following a request by Oklahoma's Attorney General Scott Pruitt on Thursday, October 1, 2015. Pruitt requested that all currently scheduled executions be stayed following a mix-up in lethal injection drugs, discovered hours before the execution of Richard Glossip on Wednesday, September 30, 2015. Pruitt requested the indefinite stays of executions in order to allow "time to evaluate the events that transpired on September 30, 2015." The evaluation will include how drugs that were approved for use in executions were procured, and how it was not immediately noted that the drugs were incorrect. The executions have not yet been rescheduled.

Benjamin grew up in a household that abused drugs and alcohol. Allegedly, Benjamin was given drugs and alcohol at a very young age by his parents. Benjamin also alleged that he was sexually abused by various family members. Benjamin had previously been married to his first cousin. Benjamin had been convicted in 1987, in California, for abusing his infant son, who was named after him.


On December 20, 2002, Benjamin Cole was playing video games, when he was interrupted by his crying nine-month-old daughter, Brianna. Cole attempted to get Brianna, who was lying on her stomach, to stop crying. When he was unsuccessful, he took her feet and bent them towards her head, ultimately flipping her over. This action snapped her back in two and tore her aorta. Cole then went back to playing video games.


Later that night, Cole and his wife noticed that Brianna was having difficulty breathing. Cole attempted to perform CPR, while his wife called for an ambulance. Brianna died that night. Cole initially lied about what had happened that day, confessing only when confronted with the autopsy results. He was sentenced to death On December 8, 2004.


Benjamin Cole was scheduled to be executed earlier this year, however his execution was stayed pending the results of a ruling regarding the use of midazolam by the Supreme Court of the United States. Upon the Supreme Court approving the use of midazolam in executions, Oklahoma rescheduled Benjamin’s execution.


Please pray for peace and healing for the family of Brianna. Please pray for strength for the family of Benjamin. Please pray that if Benjamin is innocent or lacks the mental competency to be executed, evidence will be presented before his execution. Please pray that Benjamin will come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already.



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