Thomas Creech Execution Scheduled 2/28/24

thomas creech idaho death row

The State Of Idaho is getting ready to execute Thomas Creech on February 28 2024 for a prison murder

According to court documents Thomas Creech would be convicted of two murders and would be sentenced to death by hanging. However the Supreme Court would later rule that hanging was deemed cruel and unusual punishment so Creech death sentence would be commuted to life in prison without parole

Five years after getting off of death row Thomas Creech would murder a fellow inmate by beating him to death with a sock that was full of batteries. For this murder Thomas Creech would be once again sentenced to death.

Thomas Creech has been on death row since 1981. Thomas is believed to be responsible for at least half a dozen murders and I can not figure out why it has taken over forty years to execute him

Thomas Creech executed is scheduled for February 28 2024 by lethal injection

  • Update – Thomas Creech execution was stopped as officials were unable to find a vein for the lethal injection process

Thomas Creech News

For nearly 50 years, Idaho’s prison staffers have been serving Thomas Eugene Creech three meals a day, checking on him during rounds and taking him to medical appointments.

This Wednesday, some of Idaho’s prison staffers will be asked to kill him. Barring any last-minute stay, the 73-year-old, one of the nation’s longest-serving death row inmates, will be executed by lethal injection for killing a fellow prisoner with a battery-filled sock in 1981.

Creech’s killing of David Jensen, a young, disabled man who was serving time for car theft, was his last in a broad path of destruction that saw Creech convicted of five murders in three states. He is also suspected of at least a half-dozen others.

But now, decades later, Creech is mostly known inside the walls of the Idaho Maximum Security Institution as just “Tom,” a generally well-behaved old-timer with a penchant for poetry. His unsuccessful bid for clemency even found support from a former warden at the penitentiary, prison staffers who recounted how he wrote them poems of support or condolence and the judge who sentenced Creech to death.

“Some of our correctional officers have grown up with Tom Creech,” Idaho Department of Correction Director Josh Tewalt said Friday. “Our warden has a long-standing relationship with him. … There’s a familiarity and a rapport that has been built over time.”

Creech’s attorneys have filed a flurry of last-minute appeals in four different courts in recent months trying to halt the execution, which would be Idaho’s first in 12 years. They have argued Idaho’s refusal to say where its execution drug was obtained violates his rights and that he received ineffective assistance of counsel.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday rejected an argument that Creech should not be executed because he was sentenced by a judge rather than a jury.

It’s not clear how many people Creech, an Ohio native, killed before he was imprisoned in Idaho in 1974. At one point he claimed to have killed as many as 50 people, but many of the confessions were made under the influence of now discredited “truth serum” drugs and filled with outlandish tales of occult-driven human sacrifice and contract killings for a powerful motorcycle gang.

Official estimates vary, but authorities tend to focus on 11 deaths. Creech’s attorneys did not immediately return phone calls from The Associated Press.

In 1973, Creech was tried for the murder of 70-year-old Paul Schrader, a retiree who was stabbed to death in the Tucson, Arizona, motel where Creech was living. Creech used Schrader’s credit cards and vehicle to leave Tucson for Portland, Oregon. A jury acquitted him, but authorities say they have no doubt he was responsible.

The next year, Creech was committed to Oregon State Hospital for a few months. He earned a weekend pass and traveled to Sacramento, California, where he killed Vivian Grant Robinson at her home. Creech then used Robinson’s phone to let the hospital know he would return a day late. That crime went unsolved until Creech later confessed while in custody in Idaho; he wasn’t convicted until 1980.

After he was released from the Oregon State Hospital, Creech got a job at a church in Portland doing maintenance work. He had living quarters at the church, and it was there he shot and killed 22-year-old William Joseph Dean in 1974. Authorities believe he then fatally shot Sandra Jane Ramsamooj at the Salem grocery store where she worked.

Creech was finally arrested in November 1974. He and a girlfriend were hitchhiking in Idaho when they were picked up by two painters, Thomas Arnold and John Bradford. Creech shot both men to death and the girlfriend cooperated with authorities.

While in custody, Creech confessed to a number of other killings. Some appeared to be fabricated, but he provided information that led police to the bodies of Gordon Lee Stanton and Charles Thomas Miller near Las Vegas, and of Rick Stewart McKenzie, 22, near Baggs, Wyoming.

Creech initially was sentenced to death for killing the painters. But after the U.S. Supreme Court barred automatic death sentences in 1976, his sentence was converted to life in prison.

That changed after he killed Jensen, who was serving time for car theft. Jensen’s life hadn’t been easy: He suffered a nearly fatal gun injury as a teen that left him with serious disabilities including partial paralysis.

Jensen’s relatives opposed Creech’s bid for clemency. They described Jensen as a gentle soul and a prankster who loved hunting and spending time outdoors, who was “the peanut butter” to his sister’s jelly. His daughter, who was 4 when he was killed, spoke of how she never got to know him, and how unfair it was that Creech is still around when her father isn’t.

Thomas Creech Execution Halted

Idaho’s attempt to execute death row prisoner Thomas Creech, 73, was halted an hour into his scheduled lethal injection after prison officials were unable to establish a vein to insert an IV, according to the Idaho prison system.

Creech’s attempted execution began at 10 a.m. and was called off at 10:58 a.m., according to one of four media witnesses. Creech’s death warrant will expire, prison officials said.

“At approximately 11 a.m., (Idaho Department of Correction) Director (Josh) Tewalt, after consulting with the medical team leader, determined that the medical team could not establish an IV line, rendering the execution unable to proceed.,” the department said in an email. “Mr. Creech will be returned to his cell and witnesses will be escorted out of the facility. As a result, the death warrant will expire. The state will consider next steps.”

Creech is the state’s longest-serving death row prisoner after nearly a half-century of incarceration.

He was convicted of five murders, including three in Idaho, between 1974 and 1981. He was found guilty of the November 1974 shooting deaths of Edward T. Arnold, 34, and John W. Bradford, 40, in Valley County, and later the May 1981 beating death of David D. Jensen, 23, a fellow prisoner in the maximum security prison.

Creech was later convicted of previously killing a man in Oregon, and another in California. He was suspected of several other slayings and, at points, including under oath, said he killed as many as 42 people by the time he was 24 years old. Creech’s attorneys have said that number is grossly exaggerated.

About two dozen anti-capital punishment protesters gathered outside the state prison complex south of Boise Wednesday morning to demonstrate against Creech’s execution.

Tewalt, the prison system’s director since December 2018, was scheduled to speak at a noon news conference.

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