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Execution of convicted rapist who murdered 14-year-old in 1984 in Northeast Ohio pushed back

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Posted at 5:36 PM, Apr 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-14 17:36:22-04

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A man convicted of raping and killing a 14-year-old in the Cleveland area back in 1984 has had his execution date moved back by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine who cited drug shortages as the catalyst for the decision.

Romell Broom was sentenced to die for abducting, raping and killing 14-year-old Tryna Middleton in East Cleveland in 1984.

Broom previously faced execution in 2009, but the procedure was called off after about two hours when executioners were unable to find a usable vein. His lawyers have argued for years that the state shouldn’t be allowed to try again.

Broom wasn't the only inmate who received a reprieve.

The execution dates of two other prisoners — James Hanna and Douglas Coley — were also changed.

DeWine moved Broom’s execution to March 2022, Hanna’s to May 2022 and Coley’s to July 2022.

DeWine attributed the need for the reprieves to the state’s ongoing inability to obtain drugs from pharmaceutical companies. DeWine has said for months he is concerned that drug companies — which oppose the use of their drugs in executions — could pull pharmaceuticals from state hospitals to punish Ohio if it did secure their drugs and use them for lethal injection.