Brooks's Execution Still On for Tomorrow, Tuscaloosa Women Voters' Legislator Forum

Jan 20, 2016

A federal appeals court has declined to stop an upcoming execution in Alabama.

Yesterday, the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied an emergency stay sought by inmate Christopher Eugene Brooks. Brooks is scheduled to be put to death tomorrow for the 1992 rape and murder of Jo Deann Campbell.

Brooks’s attorney had asked the court to stay the execution until a federal judge reviews the state's new lethal injection drug combination. A hearing on the constitutionality of those drugs is scheduled for April.

The 11th Circuit ruled that Brooks waited too long to join the lawsuit filed by other inmates challenging the state's execution method. Brooks’s execution will be Alabama’s first in more than two years.

Assistant Federal Defender John Palombi plans to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to stop the execution.

Voters in Tuscaloosa have a better idea on where their lawmakers stand when it comes to issues they will face in the upcoming legislative session.

The League of Women Voters of Greater Tuscaloosa hosted a “Meet Your Legislators” event last night on The University of Alabama’s campus. One of the major topics discussed was how to handle the state budget.

Representative Bill Poole says after the struggles from the previous session, things will be different this time…

“Having gone through the process last year, I think the legislature is better prepared, better educated, and better organized. We had three days of general fund budget meetings last week; they were very intensive relative to detail. I think the legislature is doing a good job of getting ahead of the issue as we prepare to balance that budget.”

The lawmakers also answered questions from the crowd on issues including infrastructure, education and the possibility of a state lottery. Five members of the state House of Representatives made up the panel.

Alabama’s seafood industry is known mostly for oysters, shrimp, and red snapper. But crayfish production is starting to grow as well.

Fans of shellfish will meet today at the 17th Annual Mollusk and Crayfish Meeting. The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries and Jacksonville State University are teaming up on the event.

Program supervisor Paul Johnson says anyone is welcome to attend the meeting. Researchers and experts will be present to share information regarding mollusks and crayfish.

“Primarily it’s for folk that are interested in natural resource issues, but it’s a great way to learn more about Alabama’s unique fauna. We do have the most diverse freshwater mollusk and crayfish fauna not only in the United States, but on the entire planet.”

Supporters of expanding crayfish production in Alabama say demand is currently outpacing what states like Louisiana can handle. The meeting will take place at 1 p.m. at the Little River Canyon Center in Fort Payne.