Retired Federal Judge "Isn't Losing Sleep" Over the Execution of Dustin Honken

Jul 16, 2020

RETIRED FEDERAL JUDGE MARK BENNETT
Credit Drake University

UPDATE: The U.S. government has put to death an Iowa chemistry student-turned-meth kingpin convicted of killing two children and three adults. It is the third execution by the federal government in one week after a hiatus of nearly 20 years. Dustin Honken, who prosecutors said killed key witnesses to stop them from testifying in his drugs case, received a lethal injection at the Federal Correctional Complex in Terre Haute, Indiana. Two others were also put to death this week: Kansan Wesley Purkey and Oklahoman Daniel Lewis Lee.

The third federal execution this week is set for tomorrow at a Federal Prison in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Fifty-two-year-old Dustin Honken kidnapped and killed five people, including two young girls, to try and silence witnesses in a drug trafficking case in Iowa back in 1993.  

DUSTIN HONKEN IN 2005
Credit FILE/Associated Press

Siouxland Public Media's Sheila Brummer talked to the judge who presided over Honken’s Federal death-penalty trial 15-years-ago, who says he isn’t losing sleep over Honken's likely execution.

Retired Federal Judge Mark Bennett now serves as the Director of the Institute for Justice Reform and Innovation at the Drake University Law School in Des Moines, Iowa.