Florida Execution of Jerry Correll Put Off Until Supreme Court Rules

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A Florida man who was scheduled for execution on Thursday has won a reprieve until the U.S. Supreme Court rules on a lethal injection case out of Oklahoma. Jerry William Correll — who stabbed to death his ex-wife, 5-year-old daughter and former mother-in-law in 1985 — won a stay of execution because Florida uses the same sedative that Oklahoma does in a three-drug cocktail.

Critics say that drug, midazolam, doesn't anesthetize inmates against pain from the other drugs that follow it and violates the constitutional protection against cruel and unusual punishment. The high court agreed to hear an appeal filed by three Oklahoma prisoners but won't issue a ruling for several months.

A Florida court decided it will wait for the U.S. Supreme Court justices to weigh in before allowing Correll to be put to death. "Without a stay of execution, Florida risks the unconstituional execution of Correll, for which there is no remedy," the judges wrote.


— Tracy Connor