For the second time Tuesday, District Judge Catherine Perry has granted a stay in the lethal injection execution of John Middleton, just over an hour from when it is scheduled to take place at the prison in Bonne Terre. Judge Perry writes that Middleton should have a hearing on his claim that he is incompetent to be executed.
The Attorney General’s Office has appealed the stay. The appeal would be heard by the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals, which has a history of lifting stays, including a separate one issued early Tuesday by Judge Perry, also related to an incompetency claim by Middleton.
Middleton was sentenced to death for the 1995 murders of three people in northwest Missouri. Middleton, a user and dealer of methamphetamine, was found guilty of murdering three people he suspected had or would “snitch” on him.
Missourinet News Director Bob Priddy is at the prison in Bonne Terre where he will witness the execution if and when it is allowed to proceed.