Utah Judge Orders Death Row Inmate Taberone Honie to Be Executed

CEDAR CITY, Utah – Taberone Honie, a death row inmate convicted of the 1998 murder and sexual assault of his girlfriend’s mother, Claudia Benn, is set to be executed by lethal injection. Honie, who has spent 25 years on death row, received the order for execution, scheduled for August 8.

During the court proceedings, Honie shook his head silently as the judge issued the order. He made no verbal statements and only glanced at his family before being escorted out of the courtroom. Honie’s conviction for the heinous crime occurred in May 1999.

The daughter of the victim, Benita Yracheta, expressed relief at the long-awaited ruling. The execution warrant, signed by Judge Jeffrey C. Wilcox following a three-hour hearing in the Fifth Judicial District court, prompted a response from state prosecutor Daniel Boyer, who stated that the judge’s decision was correct.

Honie’s attorney, Eric Zuckerman, argued for additional time to investigate the state’s protocol for the administration of a new lethal drug cocktail containing ketamine, fentanyl, and potassium chloride. Zuckerman emphasized the importance of Honie’s right to an informed choice in the matter and requested three months to evaluate the new drug cocktail and its administration procedure.

The state’s position was to address the execution stay and the signing of the execution order. Despite Honie exhausting his legal appeals, Boyer anticipates potential challenges to the judge’s decision following the issuance of the execution warrant. Zuckerman confirmed his intention to appeal the ruling, questioning the state’s readiness to proceed with an untested execution protocol without judicial scrutiny.