Lethal Injection Under Review - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Lethal Injection Under Review

The days of lethal injections in Texas could be numbered. The U.S. Supreme Court ordered a last minute stay for a Texas death row inmate Thursday now that it is reviewing one such case in Kentucky.

NewsChannel 10's Marissa Bagg explains two strong views on whether lethal injection should survive in our criminal justice system.

The U.S. Supreme Court is reviewing whether the execution procedure is cruel and unusual punishment. We've found no matter what they decide, some people in the panhandle have already made up their minds about it.

"The thought that lethal injection is cruel and unusual based on my personal viewing, I cannot understand that arguement at all," says Dr. J. Keith Price, a professor at WTAMU.

Doctor Price has witnessed two lethal injection executions. Attorney Ronald Spriggs has defended someone on death row. The two have to agree to disagree when it comes to whether the practice is cruel and unusual. Spriggs says reviewing the procedure is long overdue. He thinks Texas should hold off on other executions in the time being.

"I don't think there would be great difficulty for them to put a moratorium on executions until we hear something from the supreme court," says Spriggs.

But the State Attorney General's Office says they don't plan to halt the executions. They will address each one on a case-by-case basis. Doctor Price likes that idea.

"Should Texas change it's direction in carrying out law? The answer is clear, why should we? Texas law hasn't changed a single bit," says Dr. Price.

The next execution is set for Wednesday. It is expected to be carried out as planned.

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