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May 2, 2009

NC Supreme Court addresses doctor involvement in executions

As detailed in this local article, headlined "Justices overrule medical board: It had limited role of doctors at executions," the North Carolina Supreme Court yesterday issued a major opinion concerning doctor involvement in execution protocols.  Here are the basic details:

One roadblock to resuming executions in North Carolina is gone, but others remain after a ruling by the N.C. Supreme Court yesterday. In a 4-3 decision, the state's highest court upheld a ruling that said the N.C. Medical Board overstepped its authority when it issued a position statement saying it could punish doctors for participating in an execution.

Other lawsuits over the state's execution procedures remain, including a lawsuit in Wake Superior Court challenging how the N.C. Council of State changed execution procedures in 2007 to require someone with medical training to play a part in the execution. The change put the execution procedures in conflict with the medical board's opinion....

There hasn't been an execution in the state since Samuel Flippen of Forsyth County died by lethal injection in August 2006 for killing his 2-year-old stepdaughter. At present, 163 people are on the state's death row.

In yesterday's decision, the seven justices were deciding an appeal by the medical board of an October 2007 decision in Wake Superior Court. Writing for the majority, Justice Edward Thomas Brady wrote that allowing the board to discipline its doctors for participating in executions would elevate the board over the General Assembly....

Justice Robin E. Hudson dissented, arguing that it wasn't the court's proper role to decide the issue. She was joined by Chief Justice Sarah Parker and Justice Patricia Timmons-Goodson.

The full ruling of the NC Supreme Court can be accessed at this link.

Some related posts on doctors and executions:

May 2, 2009 at 11:43 AM | Permalink


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Now maybe some medical doctors will understand what its like to be psychologists. I doubt it, but this ruling gives me some hope.

Posted by: Daniel | May 2, 2009 1:09:06 PM

It should be pointed out. Most licensing boards are rubber stamps for lawyer prosecutors. Attacking a licensing board legally is attacking a vile criminal lover lawyer, self-styled prosecutor, falsely claiming total discretion and immunity for itself. There should be no hesitation to try to destroy these boards with ruinous defense costs from counter-suits, however frivolous or weak. It is almost a duty of the licensee to protect the integrity of the profession by taking down their lawyer puppet master. These cult criminals never protect the public. They always oppress innocent licensees with lawyer gotchas and anti-scientific, worthless over-reaching regulations, to generate jobs for themselves.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | May 2, 2009 1:38:40 PM

Easy case. Government agencies don't have the power to thwart lawful acts of persons carrying out government functions.

Posted by: federalist | May 2, 2009 11:36:17 PM

Professional societies should be considered quasi-governmental organizations. They are guideline makers. The courts have recognized them as gatekeepers in their specialty, of quality of ideas and quality of members. Their adopted resolutions often guide the courts. See Roe v Wade, basically copied from a hideous, sickening, and immoral AMA adopted resolution. They can conduct a trial of the member, with lawyers and procedures. If they punish the member, the member may suffer job problems as if punished by a licensing board.

Most of these societies have extreme left wing biased staffs and elected officers, with rigging of elections in favor of the left. The elected officials are often token spokespersons with no policy powers. The staffs will use the society to promote the Democrat Party agenda, even if most of the members want it to focus on professional matters.

I would like to see one enjoined, and taken to the brink in a class action for interfering with the lawful action of its members. To deter. They should stay out of crass political partisanship, or stop claimimg they are professional societies. The nation is divided. It is better for them to stay out of politics.

The ABA is smart. It expels people only after state disciplinary action, and does no initial disciplining itself.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | May 3, 2009 8:58:37 AM

The State has decided that it is going to kill one hundred sixty plus persons on "death row". The State has further determined that the State has a right to call upon willing collaborators to put a fine gloss on these killings.

Doctors who partipated in killing, torture, organ extractions from live inmates, and other atrocities were not judged by German courts during the Third Reich. Some were judged by an multi-national tribunal at Nuremburg. There are lessons from Nuremburg, and legal precedents, which should give the North Carolina Supreme Court some pause. It was the United States which championed those proceedings. The Russians simply wanted to shoot the war criminals without trial. We were determined to put war criminals, civilians and military alike, on notice that their crimes would henceforth not go unjudged and unpunished. The 24 hour news claque has given zero comment on the Nuremburg precedents during the recent waterboarding torture scandals. It is time that they did so.

The State Board for the medical profession should go forward on a true case and controversy after the next State killing of an inmate. One way to discipline doctors would be to oust those who violate the hypocratic oath. One question could be posed. Did the doctor "do harm" when the doctor knocked that guy unconscious so that the others in the room could kill him?

Posted by: mpb | May 5, 2009 6:46:58 AM

Yeah, mpb, docs who participate in lethal injections deserve comparison to the Nazis. You're an ass.

Posted by: federalist | May 5, 2009 2:14:35 PM

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