Frank Atwood, a death row inmate who was convicted of killing a young girl almost 40 years ago refused his final meal before being executed in Arizona.
66-year-old Frank Atwood, was found guilty of the murder of 8-year-old Vicki Lynne Hoskinson, the body of the young girl was discovered in the desert, northwest of Tucson, almost seven months after she went missing in 1984.
Atwood was executed by lethal injection at the state prison in Florence just after 10.15 am local time on Wednesday.
Atwood had exhausted all of his appeals and spent almost 35 years on death row.
General Mark Brnovich, an Arizona Attorney, said in a statement: "To an innocent child whose life was brutally taken and a family that has had to endure decades of suffering, Arizonians will never forget."
The execution of Frank Atwood was the second prisoner to be put to death in less than a month in Arizona.
Those opposed to the death penalty are now concerned that Arizona will "open the flood gates" and start executing a steady stream of prisoners on death row.
Debbie Carlson, the mother of murdered Vicki Lynne, watched the execution of Frank Atwood, and told reporters afterwards that "today marks final justice for our daughter."
She said: "Our family has waited for 37 years, eight months, and 22 days for this day to come."
Ms Carlson described her daughter as "a vibrant little girl with an infectious laugh and a smile that would melt your heart".
She added: "Her royal blue eyes reflected an old soul of wisdom, and her freckled nose was unique and we are blessed to see it in our grandchildren today.
"Vicki was a feisty little one that always kept you on your toes and will forever be known as Dennis the Menace, giggling all the way."
One of Atwood's attorneys said that the execution of his client doesn't resolve what he said were unanswered questions about the case. He said: "The state of Arizona executed Frank Atwood despite lingering doubts about his guilt.
"The case against Frank was purely circumstantial and significant evidence pointed to another suspect."
Frank Atwood refused a final meal, saying he was fasting, he wore the black skull cap of his Greek Orthodox religion with a red cross on it, along with a black cross around his neck.