Allen Nicklasson, the man convicted of murdering a Good Samaritan in 1994, was put to death in the state of Missouri last night after a judge denied his appeal for clemency. This makes the second execution in the state in the three weeks, which is a radical change given that Missouri previously had not executed anyone for three years.
Nicklasson had a troubled upbringing that led him to rehab, where he met Dennis Skillicorn and later, Tim DeGraffenreid. The three men decided to make the trip from Kansas City to St. Louis to purchase drugs but had car trouble. While the car was being repaired the first time, the three men burglarized a home and took guns and money. Then they proceeded with their trip.
When the car broke down again, Richard Drummond stopped to offer his assistance. Nicklasson took advantage of the situation, loaded the men's stolen goods into Drummond's vehicle, put a gun to his head and ordered him to drive. Sometime later, Nicklasson pulled off the road in Layfayette County, ordered Drummond out of the vehicle and shot him twice in the head.
"I'm laughing, pacing," he told the Associated Press in a 2009 interview. "I started losing it. I wouldn't want this out, but I felt a euphoria. I finally got back for all the beatings I took."
The men managed to make it to Arizona in Drummond's vehicle, but it broke down and they forced their way into the home of Joseph and Charlene Babcock. Nicklasson killed Joseph after he took them to their vehicle; Charlene was killed at her home. He later took sole responsibility for killing Drummond.
An appeals court granted him a stay of execution, and the U.S. Supreme Court voted to vacate the stay; Governor Jay Nixon refused to grant Nicklasson clemency and he was put to death soon after 10:00 p.m. CST.
The Missouri Department of Public Safety spokesman Mike O'Connell told the AP that Nicklasson prayed with a chaplain before being escorted to the execution chamber. He offered no last words and showed no reaction to the drug; Nicklasson was pronounced dead at 10:52 p.m., eight minutes after the process began.