Tonight some very odd news in juxtaposition. Clarence Hill was executed tonight by Florida. His death came hours after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected his final appeal on a 5-4 vote. Hill was executed by lethal injection, a three-drug cocktail that anesthetizes, paralyzes the lungs and then causes a massive heart attack. Reuters has a good story on Hill and seeming arbitrary splint among jurisdictions on the issue of lethal injection. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals in Ex part eJohn Alba ordered the following:No news on whether the Alba will result in a temporary stay of the Texas killing machine
We must consider whether a claim that the execution chemical protocol may violate the constitutional rights of the condemned is cognizable in a writ of habeas corpus. Before making the decision in this case, we invite, applicant, the State, and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to present their positions on the following question: Is a claim that the lethal-injection protocol violates the Eighth Amendment cognizable under Article 11.071 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure? All briefs on these issues should be delivered to this Court within 60 days from the date of this order.