Mississippi death penalty on hold; US Court of Appeals denied executions blocking
Feb 10, 2016 10:09 PM EST
A US federal court of appeals blocked an injunction that halted Mississippi's executions using lethal injections. The court of appeals said that the lower court ill-treated its discretion when it barred the use of particular injection drugs.
In August, US District Judge Henry T. Wingate issued a preliminary order which blocks the state from executing prisoners. However, the 5th Circuit US Court of Appeals said that Judge Wingate's ruling was incorrect. Moreover, one of the juries at the Circuit, Judge Walker Elrod rejected the arguments coming from the death row prisoners, as reported by ABC News. The prisoners who are to face death penalty said that Mississippi can't execute them since the state will not be using a certain class of drugs required by the state law.
The death row inmates who brought the lawsuit argue that the state's protocol for execution infringes the state requirement that an 'ultra-short-acting barbiturate or other similar drug' be used. The death row prisoners then pointed the possible use of pentobarbital, as reported by Buzzfeed.
The lawyer for the two death row inmates who challenged the protocol said that the executions in Mississippi are unlikely to restart immediately. Attorney Jim Craig said that the inmates will seek for more injunctions against the state's method of execution as Yahoo News reported. The lawyer also said that they could request a review of the case by the full 5th Circuit US Court of Appeals, but have not yet decided.
Republican Governor, Phil Bryant also released a statement saying that 'the 5th Circuit's ruling affirms his belief' that Mississippi is legally administering the death penalty. Meanwhile, Attorney General Jim Hood of Mississippi said that the state's lawmakers should find other means of executions as lethal injections are more conducive for lawsuits. The Democrat Attorney General suggested electrocution, gas chamber, hanging, and firing death squads when lethal injections are not available. The last lethal injections that were administered by the Mississippi was back in 2012.