Arizona has executed a death-row inmate for two gruesome murders he and another man committed 25 years ago.
Daniel Wayne Cook was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death for the 1987 strangulation murders in Lake Havasu City of 26-year-old Carlos Cruz-Ramos and 16-year-old Kevin Swaney.
The 51-year-old inmate spent nearly half his life on death row at a state prison in Florence.
His execution by lethal injection Wednesday was Arizona's fifth this year, and more could be scheduled. The most executions Arizona has conducted in one year was seven in 1999.
Cook's last meal included eggplant lasagna, garlic cheese mashed potatoes, roasted brussel sprouts, broiled asparagus, root beer soda and ice cream, which was served to him Tuesday night, the Arizona Department of Correction said.
His last words were: "I'd like to say sorry to the victim's family. I know that's not enough ... (significant pause) ... Where am I? To my lawyers, thank you. Red Robin, yum. I'm done. I love you."
John Matzke pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in the case and testified in Cook's 1988 trial. He was released from prison in 2007 after serving a 20-year sentence.
Cook and Matzke had worked at the same restaurant with both victims, and Cruz-Ramos shared an apartment with Cook and Matzke.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday turned down Cook's request for a stay of execution.
Cook came within a day of being executed in April 2011 before the high court stayed his execution to allow consideration of an appeal claiming ineffective legal representation.
A federal appeals court recently denied that appeal, and the Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to block Cook's execution again.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Arizona Supreme Court denied a last-ditch appeal from Cook's lawyers.
The state high court appeal, filed late Monday on behalf of Cook and other death row inmates, asked the state high court to rule the state's injection law is unconstitutional. Lower courts have ruled otherwise.
A candlelight vigil was held Tuesday evening at the state Capitol protesting the scheduled execution.
Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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