Updated with Attorney General's office calling off the execution. First posted at 11:46 a.m.
That California death row execution of Albert Greenwood Brown, Jr., scheduled for Wednesday, then Thursday, looks like its it might not happen any time soon.
Courts cleared him and five others to be killed, right? Yes, but there's always last-minute action with these things.
Brown's would have been the first California execution in nearly five years. But a federal judge hit the brakes this week, indicating there was too much confusion about how Brown could be killed and whether he could choose his poison — literally.
The state-sponsored demise of Brown, who murdered a 15-year-old girl in Riverside, was put off by federal judge this week who felt not enough time was given by a U.S. District court judge to review the state's new lethal-injection rules.
According to USC's Neon Tommy:
U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel refused to block the execution last Friday, but the appeals court requested late Monday that Fogel examine whether California's new execution laws comply with U.S. Supreme Court guidelines and the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ordered a federal judge to review the legality of a lethal injection execution.
The appeals court said that Fogel was wrong in asking Brown to choose between fatal doses of the anesthetic drug sodium thiopental or taking a three-drug cocktail. According to the appeals court, the option was “not consistent with California state law.” An inmate can choose to die either through lethal injection or the gas chamber. The court has also questioned the constitutionality of the protocol of using a three-drug cocktail.
Oh, and one of the main drugs used for lethal injection? The state is set to run out Friday, according to NT. The Volokh Conspiracy blog reports there's a national shortage.
Brown was one of three inmates from Southern California, by the way, cleared to die in the Golden State's death chamber. He's said to have posed as a jogger and nabbed his 15-year-old victim in 1980. He raped her before killing her.