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In the Bible Belt, Christmas Isn’t Coming to Death Row

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When it comes to the death penalty, guilt or innocence shouldn’t really matter to Christians.  

NASHVILLE — Until August, Tennessee had not put a prisoner to death in nearly a decade. Last Thursday, it performed its third execution in four months.
This was not a surprising turn of events. In each case, recourse to the courts had been exhausted. In each case Gov. Bill Haslam, a Republican, declined to intervene, though there were many reasons to justify intervening. Billy Ray Irick suffered from psychotic breaks that raised profound doubts about his ability to distinguish right from wrong. Edmund Zagorksi’s behavior in prison was so exemplary that even the warden pleaded for his life. David Earl Miller also suffered from mental illness and was a survivor of child abuse so horrific that he tried to kill himself when he was 6 years old.
Questions about the humanity of Tennessee’s lethal-injection protocol were so pervasive following the execution of Mr. Irick that both Mr. Zagorski and M…

Arkansas governor sets execution dates for 8 inmates

Executions have been set for (top row, from left) Kenneth Williams, Jack Jones Jr., Marcell Williams, Bruce Earl Ward, and (bottom row, from left) Don Davis, Stacey Johnson, Jason McGehee and Ledelle Lee.
Executions have been set for (top row, from left) Kenneth Williams,
Jack Jones Jr., Marcell Williams, Bruce Earl Ward, and (bottom row, from
left) Don Davis, Stacey Johnson, Jason McGehee and Ledelle Lee.
LITTLE ROCK — Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson has set execution dates for eight death row inmates, even though the state lacks one of three drugs needed to put the men to death.

According to copies of proclamations given to the secretary of state's office Monday, the state will conduct the executions in pairs on four days between April 17 and April 27.

However, it remains unclear if the Department of Corrections is capable of conducting executions, as one of the three drugs in Arkansas’ current protocol expired last month.

A prisons spokesman said Monday the state's supply of potassium chloride has not changed since it expired last month. 

He also said he was not aware of any efforts to find another batch.

Arkansas hasn't executed an inmate since 2005.

Ongoing attempts to carry out executions in the state have been halted in recent years by court challenges and difficulty obtaining drugs.

The executions are set to be carried out as followed, according to the governor's proclamation:

  • Don Davis and Bruce Earl Ward are scheduled to die on April 17.
  • Ledelle Lee and Stacey Johnson are scheduled to die April 20.
  • Marcell Williams and Jack Jones Jr. are scheduled to die April 24.
  • Jason McGehee and Kenneth Williams are scheduled to die April 27.


Source: Arkansas Online, February 27, 2017

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