Michael Elkins was convicted of robbing and killing Patricia Whitt,
59, of Largo, Florida, on July 9, 1990, after she stopped to help him
and another man who feigned car trouble along Interstate 95 near the
Whitt met Elkins and Ralph Garner earlier that night
when they helped to fix her car, which had overheated on the interstate.
She gave them $10 for helping.
Elkins was arrested days later after his girlfriend
turned him in. He had given her 3 of Whitt's rings. Garner, who was
acquitted of the murder, in which the victim was stabbed 8 times,
testified against Elkins.
Elkins waived his court appeals. His attorney, Kevin
Bell, said the once slightly-build Elkins had swollen from spleen and
liver problems and was uncomfortable in prison, adding that "his
life would have been cut short anyway."
13, 1997. South Carolina.
Michael Eugene Elkins. Lethal Injection.
Elkins's body had become swollen from liver and spleen problems, it took
nearly an hour to find a suitable vein for the insertion of the catheter.
Elkins tried to assist the executioners, asking "Should I lean my head
down a little bit?" as they probed for a vein. After numerous failures,
a usable vein was finally found in Elkins's neck.