Despite a temporary Supreme Court stay after petitions from his defense lawyers, Missouri inmate Herbert Smulls was executed by a lethal dose of pentobarbital as planned yesterday and was pronounced dead at 10:20pm local time, Reuters reports. His lawyers had argued Missouri's refusal to disclose the name of the pharmacy that produced the execution drug meant it could cause pain and suffering similar to an Ohio execution earlier this month. But the high court vacated the stay in the afternoon, and denied additional requests for a stay and appeal.
Unlike in the Ohio execution, the drug in this case was pentobarbital. At issue was the fact that as more pharmaceutical manufacturers are refusing to be party to capital punishment, states are turning to compounding pharmacies, which NBC News reports aren't regulated by the FDA. Smulls' lawyer wanted to know the pharmacy's name in order to verify the pureness of the drug. Smulls, 56, who killed a jeweler and badly injured the man's wife in a 1991 robbery, had no final words, reports Al Jazeera America, but did mouth something to his two witnesses. (Read more Missouri stories.)