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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…

Tennessee's top court denies death row challenge to execution by electrocution

NASHVILLE -- The Tennessee Supreme Court today turned down a challenge by state death row inmates to the use of electrocution has an alternative executive method, calling it premature and "unripe" for consideration.

In a unanimous opinion written by Justice Connie Clark says that "because the death-sentenced inmates are not currently subject to execution by electrocution and will not ever become subject to execution by electrocution unless one of two statutory contingencies occurs in the future, their claims challenging the constitutionality of the 2014 statute and electrocution as a means of execution are not ripe."

The court reversed a Davidson County Chancery Court judge's decision which denied the state's motion to dismiss and dismissed the "electrocution claims as unripe, and remand this matter to the trial court for further proceedings consistent with this decision."

State lawmakers passed the 2014 law in response to efforts by death row inmates' attorneys to challenge Tennessee's use of lethal injections to execute convicted murderers.

Source: Times Free Press, Andy Sher, July 2, 2015

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