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Texas Should Not Have Executed Robert Pruett

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Update: Robert Pruett was executed by lethal injection on Thursday.
Robert Pruett is scheduled to be executed by the State of Texas Thursday. He has never had a chance to live outside a prison as an adult. Taking his life is a senseless wrong that shows how badly the justice system fails juveniles.
Mr. Pruett was 15 years old when he last saw the outside world, after being arrested as an accomplice to a murder committed by his own father. Now 38, having been convicted of a murder while incarcerated, he will be put to death. At a time when the Supreme Court has begun to recognize excessive punishments for juveniles as unjust, Mr. Pruett’s case shows how young lives can be destroyed by a justice system that refuses to give second chances.
Mr. Pruett’s father, Sam Pruett, spent much of Mr. Pruett’s early childhood in prison. Mr. Pruett and his three siblings were raised in various trailer parks by his mother, who he has said used drugs heavily and often struggled to feed the children. Wh…

Oklahoma Senate Panel Approves Nitrogen Gas Executions

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Legislation that authorizes the use of nitrogen gas to execute Oklahoma death row inmates has been approved by a state Senate committee.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 8-0 Tuesday for the House-passed measure and sent it to the full Senate for a vote.

Under the bill, lethal injection would remain the primary method of execution, but nitrogen gas would be an alternative if lethal injection is declared unconstitutional or if the drugs are unavailable.

Currently, electrocution is the second option, followed by firing squad.

The bill would make electrocution the third method, followed by firing squad.

Supporters began studying alternative methods after an execution went awry last year and led the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the constitutionality of Oklahoma's three-drug protocol.

Source: Associated Press, March 24, 2015

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