Andrea Cabral, former secretary of public safety and sheriff of Suffolk County, spoke with Boston Public Radio on Thursday about the execution of a possibly innocent man in Missouri — the country's first execution amid the pandemic.

"A guy by the name of Walter Barton, who was ultimately convicted of a murder in 1991, lived in a trailer park, and the woman who was the manager of the trailer park, with whom he was friends, was found dead in her bedroom, a particularly gruesome murder," she said. "What Walter Barton said, and what the victim's granddaughter said, was that they discovered her in the bedroom, Barton pulled the granddaughter away from her, and in the process, he says, got a few small bloodstains on his clothing."

The small bloodstains are what tied him to this murder, Cabral noted.

"There is no way you can commit a murder that gruesome and have that small amount of blood you have on you," she said. "So he had been tried five times, there were mistrials, and ultimately they just executed him on Tuesday."

Barton had maintained his innocence all along, and spent his time researching the law to make his case, Cabral added.

"But the pandemic actually hindered the last minute attempts to get a reprieve or pardon, it actually hindered them develing further into the falsity of this evidence," she said. "The execution went through, the higher courts were primarily concerned with finality, so he was killed on Tuesday."

Cabral is the former secretary of public safety and sheriff of Suffolk County. She is currently the CEO of Ascend.