crimesider

Billy Don Alverson Execution: Oklahoma Execution First of 2011

Billy Don Alverson Execution: Oklahoma Execution First of 2011
Billy Don Alverson (AP Photo, file)

MCALESTER, Okla. (CBS/AP) Billy Don Alverson, the Oklahoma death row inmate convicted in the 1995 killing of a convenience store worker, was executed by lethal injection Thursday evening by the state of Oklahoma. 

It was the first execution conducted in the U.S. this year.

The Oklahoma Department of Corrections says 39-year-old Billy Don Alverson was pronounced dead at 6:10 p.m. Thursday at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary after receiving a lethal dose of drugs while strapped to a hospital gurney.

The Washington-based Death Penalty Information Center says Alverson was the first person to be executed in the U.S. in 2011.

Alverson was among four men convicted in the February 1995 killing of 30-year-old Richard Yost, who was the night manager of a convenience store in Tulsa. His body was found bound and beaten on the blood-soaked floor of the store's cooler.

Three of Alverson's co-defendants were also sentenced to death. One of them, 31-year-old Darwin Brown, was executed in January 2009.

Department of Corrections spokesman Jerry Massie said Alverson requested for his last meal a large pepperoni and Italian sausage pizza and a large Dr. Pepper.

His last words were an emotional statement to his family and the family of his victim.

"I would like to say to the Yost family I'm sorry, please forgive me," Alverson said. "And to my own family, I'm alright."

Alverson blew kisses to weeping family members in an adjacent viewing room and urged them not to cry.

"God is good, don't do it," he said. "Don't ever worry about me."

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