From the Richmond Times-Dispatch: Killer Emmett’s latest appeal denied:
Unless the U.S. Supreme Court grants a stay or Gov. Timothy M. Kaine steps in a second time, Christopher Scott Emmett will die by lethal injection tomorrow night.
Emmett won a reprieve in June two hours before he was to be executed when Kaine delayed it until Oct. 17 to give the U.S. Supreme Court a chance to consider hearing his appeal. The justices declined.
However, on Sept. 25, the high court agreed to hear challenges to the constitutionality of lethal-injection procedures in Kentucky, procedures similar to those used in Virginia and other states that use lethal injection.
There was an execution in Texas on Sept. 25 but none in the U.S. since.
Yesterday, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected Emmett’s request for a stay. But another federal appeals court stayed an execution set for today in Arkansas. And an execution scheduled for last night in Nevada was halted by the Nevada Supreme Court 90 minutes before it was to take place, according to The Associated Press.
Emmett’s lawyers are asking the U.S. Supreme Court and Kaine to stop the execution until the high court rules on whether lethal injection constitutes cruel and unusual punishment.
In papers filed yesterday, the Virginia attorney general’s office urged the justices to reject the request for a stay, arguing it was foot-dragging. Emmett, the state says, never challenged his method of execution during his trial or in prior appeals.
Kevin Hall, a Kaine spokesman, said yesterday that “we’re closely monitoring court activity, and the governor is still weighing the updated clemency requests from Emmett’s attorneys.”
Emmett was sentenced to die for the April 2001 slaying of John F. Langley, 43, of Roanoke Rapids, N.C. The two men worked for a roofing company in Roanoke Rapids and were staying in a Danville motel during a project. Emmett beat Langley to death with a brass lamp for drug money.
In addition to asking Kaine for a reprieve, Emmett’s lawyers also asked him to order an administrative review of the state’s current lethal-injection protocol. Kaine opposes capital punishment but has said he believes lethal injection is constitutional.
Richard Dieter, director of the Death Penalty Information Center, said he believes condemned inmates seeking reprieves until the Supreme Court rules will be successful.
Uh, where’s a quote from people that support the death penalty since you want to get quotes from people that oppose the death penalty?
If executed, Emmett would be the 99th person put to death in Virginia — 70 by lethal injection — since capital punishment was allowed to resume in 1976.