Appeals court denies Missouri death penalty case
By Associated Press
St. Louis, MO – A federal appeals court deals a major blow to a Missouri death penalty case that effectively had halted executions in the state.
The Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday denied a request by condemned inmate Michael Taylor to consider whether Missouri's lethal injection method is constitutional. The court's three-judge panel ruled in June that Missouri's execution procedure is not cruel and unusual punishment.
Taylor's attorney says she will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review the case.
A federal judge's order last year to suspend executions will be lifted within a week, freeing the state to set execution dates. However, if Taylor asks, and the appeals court agrees, the moratorium could be continued while the high court decides whether to consider the case.