US carries out the 1st federal execution in nearly 2 decades

Death Penalty
Protesters against the death penalty gather in Terre Haute, Ind., Monday, July 13, 2020. Daniel Lewis Lee, a convicted killer, was scheduled to be executed at 4 p.m. in the federal prison in Terre Haute. He was convicted in Arkansas of the 1996 killings of gun dealer William Mueller, his wife, Nancy, and her 8-year-old daughter, Sarah Powell. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) – The federal government has carried out its first execution in almost two decades.

47-year-old Daniel Lewis Lee was killed by lethal injection Tuesday before dawn at the federal prison in Terre Haute, Indiana.

He was convicted of murdering an Arkansas family in a 1990s plot to build a whites-only nation in the Pacific Northwest.

His last words were to proclaim his innocence. Lee is the first death row inmate to be executed since 2003.

His execution came over the objection of the victims’ family and following a series of delays and legal challenges related to the coronavirus pandemic.

Critics of the Trump administration argued the government was pushing capital punishment for political gain.?

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