Tennessee Gov. halts execution of man convicted of murdering family due to 'oversight'

3 mins read

[ad_1]

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

Tennessee’s Republican governor temporarily called off what would have been the state’s first execution since the start of the coronavirus pandemic citing an “oversight” in the state’s lethal injection preparation.

Gov. Bill Lee didn’t elaborate on what exactly forced the surprise 11th-hour stop to the planned execution of 72-year-old Oscar Smith. But Amy Harwell, an attorney with the federal public defender’s office representing Smith, said her office received a notice that the issue dealt with “mishandling” of the drugs — though no further specifics were provided to her office.

File-This Nov. 10, 2020, file photo shows Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee speaks with reporters in Nashville, Tenn.. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

File-This Nov. 10, 2020, file photo shows Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee speaks with reporters in Nashville, Tenn.. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)
(AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)

TENNESSEE PLANS ITS FIRST POST-COVID INMATE EXECUTION

Smith had been scheduled to receive a three-drug injection only a short while later at a Nashville maximum security prison.

“Due to an oversight in preparation for lethal injection, the scheduled execution of Oscar Smith will not move forward tonight. I am granting a temporary reprieve while we address Tennessee Department of Correction protocol,” Lee said in a statement promising further details once available.

This undated photo provided by the Tennessee Department of Correction shows inmate Oscar Smith. Tennessee's governor said Tuesday, April 19, 2022, that he will not intervene in the scheduled execution later this week of Smith, convicted of fatally stabbing and shooting his estranged wife and her sons decades ago. Attorneys for the 72-year-old asked Republican Gov. Bill Lee for clemency, citing problems with the jury in his 1990 trial. Smith is set to receive a lethal injection on Thursday, April 21.

This undated photo provided by the Tennessee Department of Correction shows inmate Oscar Smith. Tennessee’s governor said Tuesday, April 19, 2022, that he will not intervene in the scheduled execution later this week of Smith, convicted of fatally stabbing and shooting his estranged wife and her sons decades ago. Attorneys for the 72-year-old asked Republican Gov. Bill Lee for clemency, citing problems with the jury in his 1990 trial. Smith is set to receive a lethal injection on Thursday, April 21.
(Associated Press)

TENNESSEE PASSES BILL REQUIRING DRUNK DRIVERS TO PAY CHILD SUPPORT IF THEY KILL A PARENT

Smith was convicted and sentenced to death for the 1989 murder of his estranged wife and her two teenage sons. Shortly before the governor intervened, the U.S. Supreme Court had denied a last-hour bid by Smith’s attorneys for a stay.

Smith has maintained that he is innocent, denying any role in the murder of his family. 

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Kelley Henry, an attorney with the federal public defender’s office, called for an independent entity to investigate why the execution had to be postponed, saying no execution should happen until questions are answered.

Demonstrator Brad Davis waits to enter the grounds of Riverbend Maximum Security Institution before the scheduled execution of inmate Oscar Smith Thursday, April 21, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Demonstrator Brad Davis waits to enter the grounds of Riverbend Maximum Security Institution before the scheduled execution of inmate Oscar Smith Thursday, April 21, 2022. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
(Associated Press)

Henry said the governor did the “right thing” by stopping the execution which would “certainly have been torturous to Mr. Smith.”

Just before learning of his reprieve, Smith had received communion from his spiritual adviser and had also been served his last meal which included a double cheeseburger and apple pie hours earlier.

Associated Press contributed to this report

[ad_2]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Latest from Blog