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Man executed after DNA solves case

Published: 11:08PM Wednesday August 22, 2007 Source: Reuters

Oklahoma executed a man on Tuesday for a 1987 rape and murder that had gone unsolved for 10 years, the state corrections department said.

Frank Duane Welch, 45, was condemned for the February 25, 1987, strangling of Jo Talley Cooper, 28, after entering the pregnant woman's home in Norman, Oklahoma, by posing as a cable television repairman.

Cooper's murder went unsolved for 10 years until DNA evidence linked Welch to the slaying. Welch admitted to Cooper's murder in a letter earlier this year to the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board.

While strapped to a gurney in the death chamber at the McAlester, Oklahoma, state prison on Tuesday, Welch apologised for his crimes.

"There is nothing that can change the horrible thing I done," Welch said. "There is nothing that can change that. I take full responsibility for what I done. I am truly, truly sorry for all the hurt and pain I have caused you."

Welch was the 86th person executed by Oklahoma since 1990, when the state resumed executions. He was the second person executed in Oklahoma this year.

Welch's last meal was a large super supreme pizza and a two-litre bottle of Coca-Cola, according to a statement from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections.

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