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February 15, 2006

Another front in the lethal injection wars

Over here at SCOTUSblog, you can access a cert. petition filed today in Abdur'Rahman v. Bredesen by the folks at Goldstein & Howe challenging the constitutionality of Tennessee's lethal injection protocol.  Here is how Amy Howe explains this new battle line in the lethal injections scrummages (background here and here):

While the Court has been bombarded with a number of lethal injection cases of late, we believe that if the Court is inclined to consider the issue this one is an especially appropriate case for the Court's review, for a couple of reasons.  First, unlike most of the other cases that have sought Supreme Court review, this case is not an eve-of-execution challenge and presents a very well-developed record. Second, the case is not complicated by procedural questions such as whether the challenge to the protocol is a second or successive habeas petition; rather, Abdur'Rahman's state-law right to bring this federal constitutional claim is uncontested.

Meanwhile, as this AP article details, a Texas death row inmate has an appeal before the Supreme Court on the lethal injection issue in an effort to halt his execution scheduled for this evening.

UPDATE: As detailed here, the Supreme Court refused to intervene and Wednesday evening Texas carried out its fourth execution of the year.  Another one is scheduled for next week in Texas.

February 15, 2006 at 05:42 PM | Permalink


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