The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a request from an Oklahoma death-row inmate to put his execution on hold while questions about the constitutionality of the state’s lethal-injection protocol are resolved.
Bigler Jobe Stouffer has been sentenced to die on Thursday morning for the 1985 murder of schoolteacher Linda Reeves. Lawyers for the 79-year-old inmate came to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, asking the justices to block his execution. They argued that Stouffer should have been allowed to join a challenge to the state’s lethal-injection protocol, filed after the botched execution of Clayton Lockett in 2014, and that the state should not execute him until that challenge has been litigated.
Problems with the Lockett execution and the 2015 execution of Charles Warner led to a six-year moratorium on executions in Oklahoma. The state ended the moratorium in October when it executed John Marion Grant, who convulsed and vomited during the lethal injection after the Supreme Court denied Grant’s request for a stay.
In an unsigned order issued shortly after 9 a.m. on Thursday morning, the justices declined to intervene to block Stouffer’s execution. There were no recorded dissents.
This article is also published on SCOTUSblog.