SUPREME COURT RULES THAT INMATES CAN CHALLENGE LETHAL INJECTION-Andrew Stelzer06/12/06
The Supreme Court has ruled in favor of a death row inmate in Florida who wants to challenge execution by lethal injection as a cruel and unusual punishment. The decision allows almost all of the 3,300 inmates currently on death row to challenge their pending execution on civil rights grounds.
The ruling in favor of Clarence Hill allows a court challenge to move forward against lethal injection, the method of execution being used in 38 of the 39 states, which employ the death penalty. Hill, who was convicted of killing a Pensacola police officer in 1982, was minutes away from execution this past January, when the supreme court decided to take up his case petition for the right to proceed in lower court. Hill's attorneys had been arguing that the three chemicals used for lethal injection cause pain, thus violating the 8th amendment against cruel and unusual punishment, but a Florida appeals court was refusing to hear the case. Now that case will be heard. Earlier today, WMNFs Andrew Stelzer spoke with Mark Elliot, the spokesperson for Floridians for alternatives to the death penalty, and the state death penalty abolition coordinator for Amnesty international.
ELLIOT ON CLARENCE HILL
That was Mark Elliot, spokesperson for Floridians for alternatives to the death penalty.