The interim warden at the troubled Manhattan lockup where Jeffrey Epstein killed himself served as the executioner at five executions carried out by the Bureau of Prisons in recent months, a report said Monday.
Warden Eric Williams participated in the five executions when the federal agency resumed killing death row inmates in July during President Trump’s final months in office, the Associated Press reported.
Williams detailed his experience during two of the executions in court filings included in court cases related to the agency’s use of the death penalty.
In one of the statements, Williams said he was the official to ask inmate Brandon Bernard if he had any statements to make before he was put to death.
“I witnessed the execution on December 10, 2020, from inside the execution room, several feet from Mr. Bernard,” Williams stated.
“I asked Mr. Bernard if he would like to make a statement, which he did. When he was
finished, I read Mr. Bernard’s sentencing information aloud, and asked the U.S. Marshals’
representative to check whether there were any impediments to proceed with the execution,” he added.
“Thereafter, the administration of the lethal injection substances began. At the same time, Mr. Bernard spoke to his Minister of Record and stated, ‘tell my family I love them’,” Williams added.
The Associated Press, which witnessed all of the 13 executions carried out by BOP, reported that Williams stood next the inmates as they were strapped to a gurney while wearing black gloves and showing no emotion.
He then stared at each of the five inmates as they were put to death, according to the report.
Williams took the reins at the Metropolitan Correctional Center after warden Marti Licon-Vitale stepped down in late January after a year in the top spot.
The facility has been plagued with issues since Epstein’s death, including a coronavirus outbreak, a smuggled handgun and lawsuits regarding sexual abuse by guards.
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