State High Court Ruling Shuts Door On San Quentin Execution

SAN FRANCISCO (BCN/AP) – California has called off its scheduled Thursday execution following setbacks in both federal and state courts.

The attorney general’s office said in a court filing Wednesday that it can no longer try to proceed with the lethal injection of Albert Greenwood Brown this week. It would’ve been California’s first since 2006.

The seven justices of the California high court also turned down an emergency petition by lawyers for the state asking that they set a deadline of 5 p.m. Thursday for an appeal in a separate state court case.

In that case, two other death row inmates, Mitchell Sims and Michael Morales, won a Marin County Superior Court injunction barring all executions in the state until there was public review of the state’s lethal injection execution protocol.

A state appeals court on Sept. 20 ordered an end to the injunction, but the inmates have 10 days – or until Thursday – to appeal and, under court rules, the appeal can be filed as late as 11:59 p.m. If no appeal is filed, the state Supreme Court itself has 20 more days to consider whether to review the case.

The injunction remains in effect during the appeal process.

Meanwhile, the state’s supply of one of the drugs used inexecution will expire on Friday, meaning that the execution cannot be carried out after Thursday. Authorities don’t expect to obtain more of the drug until 2011.

The state Supreme Court in a three-page order refused to alter its deadline rules.

“No compelling reason appears why this court should, by extraordinary means, remove an obstacle to Brown’s execution by denying litigant Sims his full normal time to petition for review in this court, or by cutting short its own jurisdictional time to grant or order review” in the case, the court said.

The seven justices said that by scheduling the execution for this week, “the state has itself contributed to circumstances incompatible with the orderly resolution, pursuant to normal procedures, of pending legal issues in connection with executions under the new regulations.”

Because the case before the court concerns state law, the California Supreme Court has the final word and its order can’t be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Lawyers in the case were not immediately available for comment.

  • Jim C.

    Where was the flippen high courts concern when he raped and killed that 15yr old girl. What about HER pain and suffering. Awwww…. the poor inmate “might” feel some pain during the procedure. To Bad…. the courts have their prioritis all messed up and need to think more about the victem!!

    • Nick

      Just to double check the logic here, you believe that the court had prior knowledge about the rape and murder and chose to do nothing? I never understand this line of thinking… the courts, the cops, nearly ALL of us would have done what we could to stop her pain and suffering if we could have… but that’s not the matter before the court at this time. Right NOW, it’s the matter of an execution and they need to follow laws. Just because a court or a person speaks to concerns regarding the death penalty, doesn’t mean that the people or courts HATE or Don’t CARE about the victims of the crime that got the inmate onto death row.

  • weird boy

    Can’t you just use the gas chamber and put that S.O.B. to death! who cares if he feels pain, and if so, why didn’t anyone care about the 15 yr old girl’s pain!!!!!!! HUH?

  • dan

    Why do we keep pandering to these people’s request for mercy. They gave up that right when they decided to take someone else’s life. Maybe we wouldn’t have a shortage in our state budget is we didnt spend thousands of dollars housing them.

  • Padraig

    wait a minute…let me get this straight…he rapes and murders a 15 year old teen and we are arguing about the pain of the drugs entering his body…PUHLEEEEEEEEZE

  • Mikey

    Lets see, he raped and murdered a 15 year old girl and brutally as I recall. Why not just put him general population. I doubt he would last long enough for a justice to reverse the case and maybe he will find out what it felt like. (One can only hope)

  • The Needle

    Put him back in general population with child molestor branded to him. Let the other inmates in general population rape and murder him, save all of us the money of keeping him on death row and paying for stupid wrangling to try and save his own life. He didn’t care about the girl or her family, and he should be grateful he is not suffering as she did. I could frankly care less if he suffers immensely, in fact I would like it he enjoyed torturing others, so I would enjoy watching him die a slow and painful death. Boo for the courts, put him down like a bad dog, he is no different!

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