The 3 times US executions were started, then stopped
Since the introduction of the electric chair, three death row inmates in the U.S. survived the first attempts to execute them after the process began.
—May 3, 1946: The execution of Willie Francis, 17, was called off after an improperly prepared electric chair failed to work in Louisiana. Francis was sentenced to die for the murder of St. Martinville, Louisiana, druggist Andrew Thomas, who once employed Francis. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to allow a second execution to proceed, rejecting double jeopardy arguments. Louisiana successfully executed the 18-year-old Francis by electric chair on May 9, 1947.
—Sept. 15, 2009: The execution of Romell Broom, then age 53, by lethal injection was called off after two hours when Ohio prison technicians were unable to find a suitable vein, as Broom cried in pain while receiving 18 needle sticks. Broom was sentenced to die for raping and killing 14-year-old Tryna Middleton after abducting her in Cleveland in 1984 as she walked home from a football game with two friends. Broom, now 61, remains on death row. He has been arguing in court that the state shouldn’t be allowed a second attempt to execute him.
—Nov. 15, 2017: The execution of Alva Campbell, 69, by lethal injection was called off after members of Ohio’s execution team told the state prisons director they couldn’t find a vein to insert an IV. Campbell was sentenced to die for the shooting death of 18-year-old Charles Dials during a 1997 carjacking. In preparation for Campbell’s execution, the Ohio prisons department decided to provide him with a wedge-shaped pillow to help him breathe while he was put to death, because Campbell has chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder attributed to a decadeslong two-pack-a-day smoking habit.