AR Supreme Court Grants Stay of Execution for Inmate Stacey Johnson

Posted April 20, 2017

They also said the execution should be put on hold to allow for newer types of DNA testing that were previously unavailable.

Arkansas officials vowed to carry out a double execution later this week after the U.S. Supreme Court delivered a setback to the state's plan to resume capital punishment for the first time in almost 12 years by refusing to lift an order sparing an inmate just minutes before his death warrant expired.

Arkansas remains hopeful it can execute five inmates before the end of the month after courts blocked the state from putting two men to death Monday night.

While both of Wednesday's rulings could be overturned, Arkansas now faces an uphill battle to execute any inmates before the end of April, when another of its drugs expires. Jeremy Hutchinson, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee. Thus for Fox to imply that the planned executions are opposed merely by "critics" is a gross understatement of the legal challenges ADC is facing.

Johnson was set for execution Thursday night along with inmate Ledell Lee, who is also seeking a stay in a separate case. Lee was sentenced to death after being convicted of killing Debra Reese with a tire iron in February 1993 in Jacksonville.

Baker cited the Eighth Circuit's reversal of her earlier stay in her decision to cancel the hearing. One of those winners voted for Monday's night stay.

Two court rulings dealt a blow to the USA state of Arkansas in its attempt to put to death seven inmates within days.

McKesson said that ADC is a long time customer of the company and for most of the relationship, the ADC largely bought medical surgical supplies and other related items. In an amicus brief they filed with the district court, the companies wrote that using their medicines in executions "runs counter to the manufacturers' mission to save and enhance patients' lives". Only one of the seven justices is up for election next year, and judicial rules prevent candidates from announcing their bids until next month. By the time Echols was released along with Jessie Misskelley Jr. and Jason Baldwin on August 19, 2011 after they submitted Alford pleas (in which you plead guilty but maintain your innocence), he had spent more than half his life on Arkansas' death row. But death penalty appeals nearly always are referred to the entire court. Goodson had touted her commitment to conservative values, while Kemp said in a campaign ad he would be guided by "prayer, not politics".

Her two young children were at home at the time.

Tim Jenkins, an account manager for the drug distribution company McKesson Corp., testified in front of Pulaski County Circuit Judge Alice Gray as part of his employer's suit against the state Department of Correction.

The first two inmates scheduled for execution on Monday were spared - one of them by the U.S. Supreme Court minutes before his death warrant expired - and one of the two rulings on Wednesday could scuttle the entire schedule.

An eighth inmate, Jason McGehee, previously won a stay from a federal judge regarding his clemency schedule, and Arkansas has not appealed that ruling.

An attorney for Stacey Eugene Johnson, sitting on death row since 1993 for the murder of 25-year-old mom Carol Heath, insists that today's "more precise" DNA testing would clear his client's name.

Two more inmates - Don Davis and Bruce Ward - were scheduled to be executed this past Monday, April 17, but were not.

"The families are entitled to closure and finality of the law", wrote Justice Shawn Womack, a former Republican legislator whose rival previous year was also targeted by conservative groups. The U.S. Supreme Court then opted not to lift the stay for Davis.

The inmates' legal teams, as many death penalty opponents have argued, fear that midazolam does not render the inmates unconscious - its main goal in an execution.

The situation is a familiar one for Rebecca Petty, whose daughter's killer was granted a reprieve by federal courts hours before his execution in 2004.