- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 18, 2012

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio on Wednesday executed a man for fatally stabbing the 15-year-old son of his former employers during a 1985 farmhouse burglary, marking the state’s first execution in six months.

Forty-nine-year-old Mark Wiles died by lethal injection, ending an unofficial moratorium on the death penalty that occurred while the state and a federal judge wrangled over Ohio’s lethal injection procedures. The time of death was 10:42 a.m.

Wiles, who dropped his final appeal last week, told the OhioParole Board that he wasn’t sure he deserved mercy but he was requesting clemency because he had to. Both the parole board and Gov. John Kasich denied Wiles‘ request.

Records show that Wiles surprised 15-year-old Mark Klima during a burglary at his family’s farmhouse and stabbed the teen repeatedly with a kitchen knife until the youth stopped moving.

Wiles spent the night on the phone, listening to the radio and writing letters, prisons spokeswoman JoEllen Smith said. He and two sisters and a brother-in-law cried during emotional visits Wednesday morning, and he also said the rosary with his spiritual adviser.

Wiles did not sleep after arriving at the death house at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville on Tuesday morning about 9:45 a.m., Ms. Smith said.

“He did have a few brief moments where he became emotional upon his arrival, but his overall demeanor has remained the same, which is respectful, cooperative and compliant with our staff,” Ms. Smith said.

For his special meal Tuesday night, Wiles requested a large pizza with pepperoni and extra cheese, hot sauce, a garden salad with ranch dressing, a large bag of Cheetos, a whole cheesecake, fresh strawberries, vanilla wafers and Sprite, Ms. Smith said.

He was visited by two sisters, a brother-in-law and his attorney, Ms. Smith said.

Wiles‘ defense team argued he should be spared because he confessed to the crime, has shown extreme remorse and regret, and has a good prison record.

Mark does want to live out his natural life in prison,” his attorneys said in their application for clemency. They added, “His remorse and regret are so overwhelming that he could not articulate reasons his life should be spared.”

Wiles easily could have escaped the farmhouse after Mark Klima surprised him, Portage County Prosecutor Victor Vigluicci told the parole board. “Instead, Wiles chose to repeatedly plunge the 8-inch kitchen knife into Mark Klima again and again,” Mr. Vigluicci said.

A report to the parole board said Wiles had suffered a head injury in a bar 12 days before the slaying in Rootstown in northeast Ohio, and a doctor testified that tests indicate he may have an injury to part of the brain that regulates impulse control. Another doctor agreed that Wiles has a brain injury and said he also has a substance abuse problem and personality disorder.

The parole board earlier this month ruled unanimously that Wilesexecution should proceed because he exploited the family’s kindness and because his remorse doesn’t outweigh the brutality of the crime.

Gov. John Kasich, without additional comment, agreed with the board last week.

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