July 19, 2005

Oklahoma man executed for 1991 murder

MCALESTER, Okla. (Reuters) - A man who killed a store clerk
during a 1991 robbery and blamed it on steroid use was executed
on Tuesday by lethal injection.

Michael Pennington, the third person put to death this year
in Oklahoma, was condemned for murdering Bradley Grooms while
robbing a Lawton, Oklahoma, convenience store on Oct. 21, 1991.

Pennington later said he was psychotic at the time of the
crime because of anabolic steroids he took to enhance his
weight-lifting regimen.

He had no final words while strapped to a gurney awaiting

For his final meal, Pennington, 37, requested a vegetarian
pizza, salad with Italian dressing, a hot fudge sundae, a bag
of Oreo cookies and a pint of milk.

He was the 78th person executed in Oklahoma since the state
resumed capital punishment after the U.S. Supreme Court lifted
a national death penalty ban in 1976.