death row

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Tennessee Nears Execution of Blind Convict, a Rarity

As inmates age on death row, an expert says, health problems increase

(Newser) - The execution of a blind man in Tennessee this week would mark only the second time in recent decades that a person without vision has been put to death in the US, the death row inmate's lawyers say. Lee Hall, 53, is scheduled to be electrocuted Thursday in a... More »

Man Nearing Execution by Firing Squad Has Died

Ron Lafferty's murder case was featured in Jon Krakauer's 'Under the Banner of Heaven'

(Newser) - A Utah death-row inmate whose double-murder case was featured in the book Under the Banner of Heaven and who was nearing execution by firing squad has died of natural causes, prison officials said Monday. Ron Lafferty, 78, died at the state prison in the Salt Lake City suburb of Draper,... More »

Celebrities Go to Bat for Man Sentenced to Die

Kim Kardashian West, others ask Texas governor to stop execution of Rodney Reed

(Newser) - Kim Kardashian West has been spending a lot of time fighting for criminal justice reform , and the latest prisoner she's advocating for has a lot of other celebrities on his side, too. Rodney Reed is on death row in Texas after being convicted of the 1996 rape and murder... More »

Blood-Filled Tumors Weren't Enough to Stop His Execution

Russell Bucklew executed after Missouri Gov. Mike Parson denies clemency request

(Newser) - Missouri executed Russell Bucklew Tuesday, despite concerns that the 51-year-old inmate's rare medical condition could have resulted in what his attorneys feared would be a gruesome death. Gov. Mike Parson earlier Tuesday denied a clemency request, and the US Supreme Court in April gave the go-ahead for Bucklew to... More »

Right Before His Execution, Words for His Victim's Family

Mark Anthony Soliz, 37, was executed in Texas Tuesday night

(Newser) - A Texas death row inmate was executed Tuesday for fatally shooting a 61-year-old grandmother at her North Texas home nearly a decade ago during an eight-day spate of crimes that included thefts and another killing. Mark Anthony Soliz, 37, received a lethal injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville for... More »

He's Set to Die Tomorrow, Says Science Proves He's Innocent

Larry Swearingen has long maintained his innocence in the death of Melissa Trotter

(Newser) - Larry Swearingen is scheduled to die in Texas on Wednesday. His bid for clemency was unanimously denied Monday by the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles, though the 48-year-old is waiting to hear on whether the Supreme Court will stay his execution and have him sidestep death for now. It'... More »

Under the Banner of Heaven Killer Closer to Firing Squad

Ronald Watson Lafferty lost his latest appeal Monday

(Newser) - A Utah death row inmate featured in the popular book Under the Banner of Heaven after killing his sister-in-law and her child for resisting his polygamist beliefs inched closer to becoming the first American to be executed by firing squad in nearly a decade after losing his latest appeal Monday.... More »

Country Hires 2 Hangmen, Says Executions Will Happen

Sri Lanka last put a man to death in 1976

(Newser) - Sri Lankan prison authorities have recruited two hangmen ahead of planned executions that would end a 43-year-old moratorium on the death penalty, an official said Monday. The recruitment of the two hangmen comes as prison authorities are preparing to carry out an order by Sri Lanka president Maithripala Sirisena, who... More »

Inmate Declines Special Last Meal, Wants to Feed Homeless

Donnie Johnson turns down $20 meal, asks supporters to feed the homeless instead

(Newser) - Donnie Edward Johnson declined to choose a special last meal, and will eat what the general prison population eats before his 7pm execution Thursday. But the convicted murderer is calling for his supporters to buy a meal for a homeless person, the Tennessean reports. Johnson's lawyer says he was... More »

His Death Shocked the World. Now, a 2nd Man Will Die for It

John William King to be executed in Texas Wednesday for the murder of James Byrd Jr.

(Newser) - A high-profile execution is scheduled to take place in Huntsville, Texas, Wednesday night. John William King, 44, is set to die for the gruesome 1998 murder of James Byrd Jr., a black man who was on June 7, 1998, offered a ride home in Jasper. The offer was a ruse:... More »

Death Row Inmate Wants Buddhist Minister With Him at Execution

Patrick Murphy is seeking a stay of execution over the issue

(Newser) - Attorneys for a Texas death row inmate have asked the US Supreme Court to stay his lethal injection until a Buddhist minister can be present with him in the execution chamber, the AP reports. Patrick Murphy's lawyers argue that executing the 57-year-old "Texas 7" member without his spiritual... More »

Man's Last Words Before Execution: 'That'll Be $5'

Billie Wayne Coble, 70, killed estranged wife's parents and brother, who was a cop

(Newser) - A Texas inmate was executed Thursday evening for the killings nearly 30 years ago of his estranged wife's parents and her brother, who was a police officer. Billie Wayne Coble received a lethal injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville for the August 1989 shooting deaths of Robert and... More »

US Executed 25 People in 2018

Executions close to historic low

(Newser) - Three states resumed executions of death row inmates in 2018 after long breaks, but nationwide, executions remained near historic lows this year, according to an annual report on the death penalty released Friday. The report by the District of Columbia-based Death Penalty Information Center says 25 executions were carried out... More »

Last Words Before Execution: 'Beats Being on Death Row'

Tennessee executes longest-serving condemned man

(Newser) - Tennessee executed its longest-serving death row inmate Thursday night—and after 36 years as a condemned man, David Earl Miller was apparently ready to die. The Tennessean reports that the 61-year-old's last words after he was strapped into the electric chair were initially inaudible. After the warden asked him... More »

Serial Killer Kills Himself After 3rd Death Sentence

He was one of 2 killers found dead at San Quentin

(Newser) - Death was apparently preferable to life on California's Death Row for serial killer Andrew Urdiales. The 54-year-old inmate was found dead in his cell at San Quentin State Prison on Friday night and authorities believe he killed himself, News 10 reports. Urdiales was sentenced to death by an Orange... More »

Maker of Electric Chair This Man Will Die in Is Concerned

Edmund Zagorski is scheduled to die Thursday in Tennessee

(Newser) - Edmund Zagorski is officially on death watch in Tennessee ahead of his planned Thursday execution. He'll be under surveillance for 24 hours in a cell next to the execution chamber as he awaits his death by electric chair , reports the AP . But there's one hiccup in terms of... More »

Death-Row Inmate Spared After Hellish Childhood Is Revealed

Raymond Tibbetts has Gov. John Kasich to thank

(Newser) - Ohio Gov. John Kasich on Friday spared a condemned killer whose sentence was challenged after a juror came forward and said information about the extent of the inmate's tough childhood wasn't properly presented at trial. The Republican governor commuted the sentence of death row inmate Raymond Tibbetts to... More »

He Didn't Commit Crime He Was Jailed For. Now, the Oprah Nod

Winfrey picks memoir by Anthony Ray Hinton, wrongly imprisoned for 30 years, for book club

(Newser) - Anthony Ray Hinton, wrongly imprisoned for nearly 30 years, can hardly believe how his luck has changed. Hinton's memoir, The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life and Freedom on Death Row, is Oprah Winfrey's latest book club pick, a dream for virtually any writer and beyond the... More »

Alabama Death Row Inmate Apparently Kills Himself

He came within 3 hours of execution last year

(Newser) - A condemned inmate in Alabama apparently decided not to wait for the state to take his life. Jeffrey Lynn Borden, a 57-year-old Death Row inmate convicted of two 1993 murders, was found hanged in his cell early Sunday in what authorities say was an apparent suicide, AL.com reports. Borden... More »

Lawyers: Boys Don't Cry Killer Is Ineligible for Execution

They argue John Lotter has IQ of a child

(Newser) - Attorneys for a Nebraska death row inmate whose case inspired the 1999 movie Boys Don't Cry say he should be ruled ineligible for execution because he has the intellect of a young child. John Lotter was sentenced to death for his role in the 1993 killings of Brandon Teena,... More »

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