As the US Supreme Court reviews the constitutionality of lethal-injection methods, a Texas appeals court yesterday stayed an execution order scheduled to be carried out tonight—bringing the country's busiest death row to a standstill. The Supreme Court is looking at a case brought by death-row inmates in Kentucky who say the injection constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.
Heliberto Chi had been sentenced to death in the 2001 killing of a store manager. "I'm grateful there's some measure of common sense descending on the great state of Texas," said Wes Ball, Chi's attorney. The appeals court gave prosecutors 30 days to address concerns about the injection process. Chi would have been the 27th inmate executed this year.