death penalty

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — State prosecutors have filed court documents saying they intend to seek the death penalty against the suspected killer of an Alabama police officer.

Marco Perez is charged with capital murder in the January death of 30-year-old Mobile Police Officer Sean Tuder. Authorities have said Tuder was shot during a struggle with Perez.

The Alabama attorney general's office says it will not release to the news media a copy of a contract related to death penalty litigation.  

   The attorney general's office on Tuesday cited security reasons for refusing a records request from The Associated Press for a copy of a $25,000 contract with a Tennessee firm specializing in occupational safety.  The state office declined to answer questions about the contract.

State Sen. Greg Albritton said the attorney general's office indicated the contract was related to litigation over nitrogen gas as an execution method.

Christopher Lee Price
ADOC via AP

ATMORE, Ala. (AP) — A man convicted of killing a country preacher during a 1991 robbery was put to death by lethal injection in Alabama on Thursday, weeks after he avoided another execution date amid disagreements between U.S. Supreme Court justices.

Christopher Lee Price, 46, became the second inmate put to death in Alabama in two weeks . The execution was carried out at Holman prison, where he was pronounced dead at 7:31 p.m.

ATMORE, Ala. (AP) — A man condemned for his role in a quadruple killing that followed a dispute over a pickup truck was put to death Thursday in Alabama after declining to make any last-minute appeals.

Michael Brandon Samra, 41, was pronounced dead at 7:33 p.m. following a three-drug lethal injection at Holman prison, authorities said.

Michael Brandon Samra
ADOC via AP

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A man convicted of killing four people, including two young girls, in a dispute over a pickup truck is set for execution Thursday evening in Alabama.

Michael Brandon Samra, 41, is scheduled to receive a lethal injection at the state prison at Atmore.

Samra and a friend, Mark Duke, were convicted of capital murder in the deaths of Duke's father, the father's girlfriend and the woman's two elementary-age daughters in 1997. The two adults were shot and the children had their throats slit.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama man facing execution next week for his role in the 1997 slayings of four people has asked the U.S. Supreme Court for a stay, arguing it should weigh the fact that he was 19 at the time.

Attorneys for Michael Brandon Samra filed the request last week to stay the scheduled May 16 execution.

The court has barred executing anyone under 18 at the time of their crimes. Samra's attorneys asked the court to weigh whether knowledge of brain development and evolving standards of decency merit extending that age to 21.

Price Temporarily Spared Lethal Injection

Apr 12, 2019
Christopher Lee Price
ADOC via AP

ATMORE, Ala. (AP) — An Alabama inmate convicted in the 1991 sword-and-dagger slaying of a pastor has been spared a lethal injection. His death warrant expired two hours before a divided U.S. Supreme Court lifted a stay of his execution early Friday.

A federal judge had stayed the execution of Christopher Lee Price on Thursday to weigh his challenge to Alabama's execution process. Alabama now must seek a new execution date from a state court.

"This evening, the state of Alabama witnessed a miscarriage of justice," Gov. Kay Ivey said in a statement.

Christopher Lee Price
ADOC via AP

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A man convicted of the sword-and-dagger stabbing death of a pastor is set to become the second person executed in Alabama this year, barring a last-minute stay.

Forty-six-year-old Christopher Lee Price is scheduled to receive a chemical injection Thursday evening, sentenced to death for the killing of pastor Bill Lynn. The 57-year-old victim was slain during a Dec. 22, 1991, robbery while preparing Christmas gifts at his home.

wjct

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — An appellate court said Wednesday that it won't halt the upcoming lethal injection of an Alabama inmate who had asked to be put to death with nitrogen gas.

The 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied an execution stay for 46-year-old Christopher Lee Price. He is scheduled to be executed by injection Thursday for the 1991 stabbing death of pastor Bill Lynn during a robbery.

ATLANTA (AP) — A federal appeals court sided with news media organizations Monday in ruling that Alabama can't keep its lethal injection protocol secret from the public.

A three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta rejected Alabama's argument that its execution method is not a court record and thus should remain secret.

Dominique Ray
ADOC

A federal appeals court has blocked the planned execution of an Alabama inmate to consider whether the state was violating the Muslim inmate's rights by not allowing an imam to replace a Christian prison chaplain in the death chamber.

The 11th U.S Circuit Court of Appeals granted a stay for 42-year-old Dominique Ray, a day before his scheduled execution for the slaying of a teenager more than two decades ago. The Alabama attorney general's office had asked the U.S. Supreme Court to vacate the stay and let the execution proceed Thursday night.

Justice Storytellers Event Tonight in Montgomery

Jul 16, 2018

Those in Montgomery today can hear the personal accounts of people who have dedicated their lives to social justice.

The event Storytellers: How I Became Justice Involved is being held tonight by the Middle District of Alabama Federal Defenders Program. It’s scheduled on the birthday of Robin “Rocky” Myers, a death row inmate in Alabama who many believe was wrongly convicted. Advocates are hoping to raise awareness of Myers’s case while also sharing their own work on social justice issues.

lethal injection chamber
EJI

A lawsuit challenging Alabama’s lethal injection process took an unexpected turn yesterday. Eight of the inmate plaintiffs asked to be put to death instead by the state’s newly-approved execution method – inhaling nitrogen gas.

Both the Alabama attorney general's office and lawyers for inmates submitted a joint motion to dismiss the litigation yesterday. Lawyers say the inmates' claims challenging Alabama’s use of midazolam in executions as inhumane are now moot, since their pending executions will now be carried out by use of nitrogen.

Walter Leroy Moody Executed Thursday Night

Apr 20, 2018
Walter Leroy Moody
ADOC

A man responsible for a wave of terror across the Southeast in the late 1980s was put to death last night.

83-year-old Walter Leroy Moody was pronounced dead at 8:42 p.m. last night following a lethal injection at W.C. Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore, Alabama.

Moody was convicted of killing U.S. Circuit Judge Robert S. Vance and Robert Robinson, a black civil rights attorney from Savannah, Georgia, with bombs sent through the mail. Two other bombs, including one mailed to a Florida NAACP office, were intercepted and did not explode.

Robert Vance
Joyce Vance via AP

A package bomber who created a wave of terror across the South is scheduled to be executed in Alabama, nearly 30 years after killing a federal judge with a bomb mailed to his home.

Walter Leroy Moody Jr., 83, is scheduled to receive a lethal injection Thursday. At his 1996 trial, prosecutors described Moody as a meticulous coward who committed murder by mail because of his obsession with getting revenge on the legal system, and then committed more bombings to make it look like the Ku Klux Klan was behind the judge's murder.

Michael Eggers Put to Death Thursday Night

Mar 16, 2018

A man convicted of killing his former boss at a traveling carnival nearly two decades ago was put to death last night after having dropped his appeals and asking courts to execute him.

50-year-old Michael Wayne Eggers died at 7:29 p.m. after receiving a lethal injection at a southwest Alabama prison. He was sentenced to death for the murder of his former employer Bennie Francis Murray in 2000. Prosecutors say Eggers admitted to strangling Murray during an argument.

Lawyers say a settlement is possible in the case of an Alabama inmate whose lethal injection was halted last month when the execution team could not find a usable vein.

Lawyers for both the state of Alabama and death row inmate Doyle Lee Hamm wrote that they were in "serious settlement discussions." The filing did not elaborate, so it's unclear what a potential settlement may entail.

Hamm's attorney is seeking to block Alabama from attempting to execute him again.

Courts Clear Way for Hamm Execution

Feb 21, 2018
Alabama Death Row
EJI

A federal judge has ruled that an Alabama inmate battling serious health issues does, in fact, have good enough veins to safely undergo a lethal injection.

U.S. District Judge Karon O. Bowdre denied a request from Doyle Lee Hamm to block his execution, currently scheduled for tomorrow. Hamm and his attorney have argued that lethal injection would be unconstitutionally cruel in his case, as drug use along with lymphoma and hepatitis C have severely compromised Hamm's veins. His lawyer also argues it would be inhumane to execute someone already battling cancer.

Federal Judge Stays Hamm Execution

Feb 7, 2018

A federal judge has stayed the upcoming execution of an Alabama man in order to have an independent medical expert review claims that he is too sick to be executed.

Chief U.S. District Judge Karon Bowdre made that ruling yesterday. A lawyer representing Doyle Lee Hamm argues lethal injection would be unconstitutionally cruel in Hamm’s case because battles with lymphoma and hepatitis C have severely compromised his veins. The lawyer also argues it would be inhumane to execute someone suffering from terminal cancer.

SCOTUS Grants Madison Stay of Execution

Jan 26, 2018
Vernon Madison
EJI

Alabama inmate Vernon Madison was scheduled to be put to death last night at 6 p.m., but he is still alive this morning.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay of execution last night in order to consider arguments from the 67-year-old inmate’s attorneys. Madison had been sentenced to death for the 1985 killing of Mobile police officer Julius Schulte. In the three decades since, Madison’s lawyers say he’s suffered multiple strokes and now has vascular dementia. That has left him unable to remember the crime he committed or understand his looming execution.

Supreme Court Rejects Madison Appeal

Jan 22, 2018
Alabama death row
EJI

The Supreme Court has paved the way for a death row inmate to be put to death on Thursday, despite his lawyers pleading he doesn’t currently remember his crime or even understand his looming execution.

Attorneys for Vernon Madison petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday asking them to review his case and whether executing him would constitute cruel and unusual punishment. Justices rejected that request this morning without issuing a written explanation.

Execution Date Set for Terminally Ill Man

Dec 14, 2017

The state of Alabama has set a date for the execution of a terminally ill man.

Al.com reports the Alabama Supreme Court ordered yesterday that 60-year-old Doyle Lee Hamm is scheduled to be put to death on February 22. Hamm has spent 30 years on Alabama’s death row.

He was convicted in the murder of Patrick Cunningham, a hotel employee in Cullman, Alabama. Cunningham was killed during a robbery that apparently netted just over 400 dollars. Hamm confessed to the murder, and two other men agreed to testify against him in exchange for lesser charges.

Alabama Executes Torrey McNabb

Oct 20, 2017

Last night, the state of Alabama put a man to death who was convicted of murdering a police officer and also in the process of suing the state over its lethal injection methods.

Alabama Asking U.S. Supreme Court to Allow Execution

Oct 3, 2017

The state of Alabama is asking the U.S. Supreme Court for permission to proceed with the execution of a man convicted of killing his estranged wife and father-in-law back in 1993.

Yesterday, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall asked the nation's high court to overturn an injunction currently blocking Thursday's scheduled execution of 56-year-old Jeffery Lynn Borden.

ADOC Executes Robert Melson

Jun 9, 2017
Alabama death row
EJI

The state of Alabama put Robert Melson to death last night for killing three people during a 1994 robbery of a Gadsden fast food restaurant.

Melson was pronounced dead at 10:27 p.m. last night, according to the Alabama Department of Corrections. It’s the second execution of the year in Alabama.

Alabama death row
EJI

A death row inmate in Alabama is looking to halt his upcoming execution due to the use of a sedative that his lawyers say has “failed to work properly in four states”.

Attorneys for inmate Robert Melson appealed to the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last week for an emergency stay of his execution. Melson is scheduled to be put to death a week from today for the killings of three Gadsden restaurant employees during a 1995 robbery.

Alabama DoC Executes Tommy Arthur

May 26, 2017

An inmate once called the "Houdini" of Alabama's death row for escaping seven past execution dates was put to death early this morning for a 1982 contract killing.

Tommy Arthur, 75, was pronounced dead at 12:15 a.m. this morning following a lethal injection, according to correctional authorities said. Arthur was convicted of killing riverboat engineer Troy Wicker, who was fatally shot as he slept in his bed in Muscle Shoals.

The U.S. Supreme Court has issued a temporary stay on the execution of an Alabama prison inmate.

The nation's high court stayed the execution of Tommy Arthur, "pending further order" from the justices, late Thursday afternoon. Arthur was scheduled to be executed Thursday evening.

Supreme Court Denies Arthur Appeal

Apr 25, 2017

The United States Supreme Court will not reconsider the appeal of an Alabama death row inmate scheduled to be executed next month.

Yesterday, Supreme Court justices refused the rehearing request by Tommy Arthur, who has had seven execution dates postponed so far.

      State lawmakers return from spring break Tuesday to a full plate of issues. State budgets, prison construction and action on the proposed impeachment of Governor Robert Bentley are among the matters set to be decided before the session ends in late May.   

   The State House of Representatives is scheduled to vote Tuesday on whether to end Alabama's practice that allows a judge to impose a death sentence when a jury has recommended life imprisonment. Alabama is the last state to still allow a judge to override a jury's sentencing recommendation in capital murder cases. 

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