CLARENCE Dixon has been sitting in jail for over a decade but will soon be put to death.
In May 2022, a judge ruled that the prisoner is now mentally fit to be put to death, marking the first execution in Arizona in eight years.
Who is Clarence Dixon and what was he convicted of?
Clarence Dixon, 66, is an Arizona prisoner who is currently sitting on death row.
Over the years, he has been found guilty of several charges, including sexual assault and murder, according to CBS News.
In the late 1980s, he was accused of assaulting a 21-year-old student and was later found guilty of the 1978 killing of Arizona State University student Deana Bowdoin which earned him a death sentence after a DNA sample obtained in prison came back a match.
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Since his conviction, his legal team has been arguing that he is not mentally competent to be put to death, and it would be unconstitutional if the state does, however, a judge disagreed.
On May 3, 2022, a Pinal County Superior Court judge found Dixon mentally competent after hearing arguments from both the prosecution and the defense.
"The court finds that Clarence Wayne Dixon has not met his burden … to show that his mental state is so distorted by a mental illness that he lacks a rational understanding of the State's rationale for his execution," Judge Robert Olson wrote in his order, via AZ Central.
The judge also acknowledged Dixon's diagnosed schizophrenia but noted that he displays "sophistication" as well as "coherent and organized thinking."
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When will Clarence Dixon be put to death?
After the judge announced his verdict, Dixon's execution date was set.
The Arizona prisoner is scheduled to be executed on May 11, 2022.
The last time that the state used the death penalty was back in July 2014, when they killed Joseph Wood, however, things did not go as planned.
At the time, Wood was given 15 doses of a two-drug combination that was meant to kill him in 10 minutes, but it took almost two hours, according to CBS News.
The execution was described by his lawyers as "botched" and was later dubbed the longest execution in U.S. history.
Following Dixon's conviction, death-row prisoner Frank Atwood will be put to death on June 8 for the killing of 8-year-old Vicki Lynn Hoskinson in 1984, CBS News notes.
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