The execution of convicted Missouri inmate Russell Bucklew has been halted by the Supreme Court of the United States.
The Court ruled the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals should consider the appeal filed by Bucklew’s attorneys. They argue that a rare medical condition affecting Bucklew’s blood vessels creates a heightened risk that he would suffer during a lethal injection. They also challenge the policy of secrecy by the Missouri Department of Corrections regarding the maker of its lethal injection drug, pentobarbital.
Bucklew was sentenced to death for the 1996 murder in Cape Girardeau County of Michael Sanders, thought to be the boyfriend of Bucklew’s ex-girlfriend. Bucklew committed the murder in front of Sanders’ 6-year-old son, who he also shot at and missed, before kidnapping his ex-girlfriend whom he raped and assaulted. He was captured after a shootout that left him and a Highway Patrolman wounded.
His execution had been set for 12:01 Wednesday morning at the Eastern Reception, Diagnostic and Correctional Center in Bonne Terre but the Supreme Court issued a stay late Tuesday night, and issued its order Wednesday afternoon.