FEATURED POST

Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

Image
The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Omaha senator files complaint against AG over death penalty drug

Omaha Senator Ernie Chambers
Omaha Senator Ernie Chambers
Omaha Sen. Ernie Chambers filed a grievance Thursday against Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson over his advice to the state regarding its efforts to obtain lethal injection drugs.

The complaint against Peterson to the Counsel for Discipline of the Nebraska Supreme Court says he failed to give his client -- the state -- proper, competent advice on its continuing efforts to import two of the drugs it needs to carry out an execution.

If the import of the drugs were successful, Chambers said, it would result in a lawless action.

"No ethical lawyer would advise a client to behave in a way that results in unlawful consequences," he said.

“(Peterson has) chosen not to discharge his duty mandated by the Rules of Professional Conduct … a basis for invoking the disciplinary process,” Chambers said.

He included in his complaint a 1990 court decision, Neb. State Bar Ass'n v. Rhodes, in which the court said the conduct of a government attorney is required to be more circumspect than a private lawyer because improper conduct would reflect upon the entire system of justice in terms of public trust.

Peterson had no response to Chambers' filing, according to spokeswoman Suzanne Gage.

The complaint said the attorney general advised the governor on importing two drugs from supplier Chris Harris of HarrisPharma in India.

Harris is known to have scammed Nebraska in the past, Chambers said. In 2011, Harris was accused by pharmaceutical company Naari of misappropriating and diverting sodium thiopental from the intended purpose of registering it for sale in Zambia as an anesthetic. Harris instead sold it to Nebraska for use in executions, a purpose to which the supplier was “deeply opposed,” its CEO said.

The drug is now illegal in this country, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and Peterson’s advice deviated from standard state purchasing procedures, Chambers said.

Nebraska Department of Correctional Services Director Scott Frakes ordered the sodium thiopental and pancuronium bromide in May from HarrisPharma, paying $54,000 in advance. In September, a shipment of sodium thiopental was turned back to the distributor before leaving India.


Source: Lincoln Journal Star, Joanne Young, December 3, 2015

- Report an error, an omission: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com - Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

Most Viewed (Last 7 Days)

Nevada law says chief medical officer must advise on executions despite ethical clash

Iran: Three Hand Amputations, Four Hangings Carried Out in Qom

Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

Iran: Woman Asylum Seeker Lashed 80 Times After Being Deported From Norway

Poorly executed - Indiana inmate challenges state's lethal cocktail change

Iran: Three executions carried out, two in front of large crowds

Two Myanmar migrants make final appeal in Koh Tao murder case

Arkansas death-row inmate tries to drop appeal blocking execution; request denied

20 Minutes to Death: Record of the Last Execution in France

"I cannot execute convicted murderers," Tanzania's president declares