Albert Greenwood Brown, the next to die under California Death Penalty law?Late Monday a federal appeals court has apparently stayed the planned execution of Albert Greenwood Brown who is scheduled to die at 9 PM Thursday.
A federal appeals court in San Francisco late Monday ordered a trial judge to reconsider a ruling that allowed for a convicted murderer and rapist to be executed this week at San Quentin State Prison.
Albert Greenwood Brown was scheduled to die at 9 p.m. Thursday for the 1980 killing of a 15-year-old Riverside girl.
But the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals said U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel erred by offering Brown a choice of a one-drug lethal injection or a three-drug cocktail.
“The district court’s decision to provide Brown the choice of a one-drug option is not consistent with California state law and procedures. California law does not provide the condemned a choice between a three-drug protocol or a one-drug option,” the ruling said.
The appeals court ordered the judge to schedule a new hearing.
The court’s order came hours after Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger ordered a one-day delay in Brown’s execution, citing a procedural complication in the state’s attempt to carry out its first death sentence in nearly five years.
The governor’s reprieve coincided with an announcement by the attorney general’s office that further lethal-injection sentences in California would have to wait until at least next year due to a nationwide shortage of the key drug used to render condemned prisoners unconscious.
And, now there is another impediment to California executions – the availability of the drug, sodium thiopental. How cute and convenient.
Jerry Brown, the California Attorney General who is personally opposed to the death penalty and who appointed the later recalled Rose Bird as Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court who let a number of infamous criminals live when her court ruled the death penalty unconstitutional decades ago is now entrusted with enforcing the death penalty law.
Good luck with the California death penalty law being enforced with Jerry Brown as Attorney General. If Brown is elected governor in November, look for more anti-death penalty Supreme Court Justices to be appointed, as well.
Also, note the company who makes sodium thiopental is having some difficulty with its product being used for legal executions.
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation “has been unable to secure sodium thiopental to perform any executions after Sept. 30,” said attorney general spokeswoman Christine Gasparac. “This office will recommend that future executions be scheduled when [the corrections department] expects the drug to be available.”
The drug manufacturer, Hospira Inc. of Lake Forest, Ill., blamed the shortage on a third-party supplier’s failure to provide the crucial pharmaceutical ingredient for its pentothal product. The company said it expected to have more available in the first quarter of 2011. But a spokesman also reiterated the company’s objections to their product being used in executions.
“Hospira manufactures this product because it improves or saves lives, and the company markets it solely for use as indicated on the product labeling. The drug is not indicated for capital punishment, and Hospira does not support its use in this procedure,” said spokesman Daniel Rosenberg, adding that the company informed corrections departments of its position earlier this year.
Death penalty opponents cannot change California law so they subvert the legal process to get their way.
What a travesty of justice.
There will not be any executions in California now until at least the first quarter of next year – if then.
From yesterday evening’s Fresno television station KFSN
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued the stay for Albert Greenwood Brown this afternoon and delayed the first California execution in five years.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger issued an order Monday delaying the execution of a convicted rapist and murderer by one day, postponing what would be the first death sentence carried out in California in nearly five years.
Schwarzenegger cited procedural reasons for the temporary reprieve, saying that an appeals court decision allowing the execution to be carried out would not take effect until Thursday, a day after the execution was previously scheduled.
The reprieve ends at 11:59 p.m. Wednesday.
The execution has now been scheduled for 9 PM Thursday night.
The governor allowed the stay so that Brown could exhaust his final appeals which would not be decided until Thursday.
Brown’s attorneys have filed simulataneous appeals to the federal courts and state courts, seeking to block his execution on the grounds that the state improperly adopted its new lethal injection procedures. They allege that execution under the new regulations would amount to cruel and unusual punishment.
The 45-hour reprieve pushes the execution to within hours of the expiration date on the state’s supply of sodium thiopental, one of the drugs used in the lethal injection process.
The attorney general’s office said Monday that it would recommend not scheduling any more executions after Sept. 30 until the state could secure a fresh supply of the drug, an anesthetic that renders the condemned inmate unconscious before lethal drugs are injected.
The delay was imposed by Schwarzenegger just hours after Marin County Superior Court Judge Verna Adams refused to block Brown’s execution after he argued in a lawsuit that California’s new death penalty regulations were improperly adopted.
“Mr. Brown cannot prove that he will suffer pain if he is executed under the current regulations,” Adams said.
A federal judge ruled similarly on Friday after Brown contended California’s lethal injection process put him at risk of suffering cruel and unusual punishment.
I mean he has had ONLY, what, almost thirty years!
Again, I would not hold my breath for this or any California execution soon.
What a travesty of justice.
Well, for now – or should I say until Monday afternoon, California executions as per state and federal law can proceed.
A federal judge in San Jose gave the go-ahead today for next week’s scheduled execution of a convicted murderer from Riverside County, which would be the state’s first execution in nearly five years.
U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel, who blocked lethal injections at San Quentin State Prison in February 2006 because of haphazard procedures, untrained staff and the potential of inflicting excruciating pain, said revised state regulations and a U.S. Supreme Court ruling had removed constitutional obstacles to renewed executions.
Fogel acknowledged that he has not yet reviewed the state’s amended procedures to determine whether they still pose a risk of violating the constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
But he said the condemned inmate, Albert Greenwood Brown, could avert that risk by choosing to be executed with a single drug – a heavy dose of the sedative sodium pentothal – rather than the three-drug combination California has used in past executions.
The potential for excruciating pain comes from the second and third drugs, paralytic and heart-stopping chemicals, if the sedative fails to work properly. Fogel noted that Ohio and Washington state have used one-drug executions on nine prisoners in the last year without reported difficulties.
The Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that Kentucky’s lethal injection procedures, using the same chemicals as California and most other states, met constitutional standards. The court said a prisoner would have to present a “demonstrated risk of severe pain” to challenge an execution with those drugs.
Brown is scheduled to be executed at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday. Fogel said he would issue a stay if Brown chose a one-drug execution and the state refused to use that method. He gave Brown until 6 p.m. Saturday to make that choice.
State lawyers spelled out procedures for a possible one-drug execution in a court filing earlier his week but said they were not conceding that the procedure would comply with state law.
So, the people of California spend almost a $ 1 million (more than $800,000) for a new death chamber and countless employee hours for new procedures and retraining so the inmate has a choice of a one drug cocktail or the old standard method?
Doesn’t anyone see this is a charade by Judge Fogel?
Judge Fogel obviously does NOT support the death penalty as a matter of personal conscience or whatever and has used every opportunity to throw up roadblocks. Interesting, that the Judge is so disinterested that he has not even toured the new facility or read the training manual. I would consider this judicial misfeasance if not out right neglect.
Anyway, Albert Greenwood Brown has until tomorrow night to decide if he wants a one drug execution or the three drug execution. If he chooses one drug and the State of California balks (says they are not ready to comply) then a stay is immediately granted. However, Judge Fogel’s order states that if Brown chooses one drug then he would have to waive his rights under state law which is the subject of a Marin County lawsuit which is pending.
Then, on Monday, a Marin County State of California judge will be asked to halt the execution while a lawsuit challenging the new lethal injection regulations is pending. Of course. Judge Fogel’s ruling today can be appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
I still would not hold my breath that there will be any California executions next week or anytime soon.
Albert Greenwood Brown, the next to die under California Death Penalty lawA California State Appeals Court has paved the way for a resumption of the death penalty in California.
A state appeals court Monday removed one of the few remaining impediments to the resumption of executions in California, helping clear the way for the lethal injection of an inmate later this month.
“We are acting with the assumption that without any stay in place … that the execution will go forward,” said Chief Assistant Atty. Gen. Dane Gillette.
The state is scheduled to execute Albert Greenwood Brown, convicted of raping and murdering a 15-year-old girl in 1980, on Sept. 29. But a federal judge could still delay executions, and another inmate has challenged a new lethal injection protocol.
The state has not executed anyone in nearly five years.
A Sept. 29 execution date was set today for a man who raped and murdered a Riverside teenager nearly 30 years ago.
Albert Greenwood Brown’s death warrant was signed by Riverside Superior Court Judge Roger A. Luebs. His execution will take place at San Quentin State Prison.
“Justice has been delayed for 30 years since Susan Jordan was murdered,” Chief Assistant District Attorney William Mitchell said. “It’s time we moved forward with this.”
Brown’s attorney’s filed a request for an emergency stay, but it was denied Friday by the California Supreme Court, clearing the way for Luebs to set an execution date.
Brown grabbed 15-year-old Susan Jordan in October 1980, as she walked along Victoria Avenue on her way to Arlington High School in Riverside, and raped and murdered the teenager.
Brown then called the girl’s parents and told them they would never see their daughter alive again and could find her in a particular orange grove.
Brown had been paroled from state prison just four months earlier for the 1977 rape of a 14-year-old girl.
He was convicted of the older girl’s rape and murder in 1982 and sentenced to death.
Brown has been on death row for over 30 years and all of his appeals have been exhausted. He goes on September 29th – after 30 years of waiting.
But, alas there are the federal courts where lethal injection procedures are under view for possible Eight amendment violations. anyone want to bet whether this miscreant is executed on the 29th?
Deputy Attorney General Michael Quinn said Tuesday officials will soon seek to schedule the executions of five other inmates, including Michael Morales of Stockton. Morales was within hours of receiving a lethal injection for the rape and murder of a 17-year-old girl when U.S. District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel in 2006 halted his execution. Fogel ordered prison officials to revamp the state’s lethal injection procedures in response to Morales’ legal challenge alleging cruel and unusual punishment.
Since then, officials have constructed a new death chamber at San Quentin Prison and rewrote the execution procedures in 2007. Morales and another death row inmate, Mitchell Sims of Los Angeles, filed a separate lawsuit in Marin County in 2007 alleging the new procedures should be subjected to public comment and the state’s time-consuming regulatory adopting process. A judge agreed and barred executions until the state properly adopted the new lethal injection regulations.
On Sunday, prison officials said those new regulations took effect.
Well, let’s see what Federal Judge Jeremy Fogel has to say tomorrow. I wouldn’t hold my breath for any executuions in California – anytime soon.