The Alabama Supreme Court set November 17th as the execution date for Kenneth Eugene Smith whose jury had recommended life without the possibility of parole by an 11-1 vote.. Talking Points are posted on our website http://www.phadp.org/?q=alerts as well as contact for Governor Ivey for letters, emails and calls. Please also sign the petition https://bit.ly/KennnethSmith from our friends at Death Penalty Action. As always we are doing all we can to be supportive of our brother who has an execution date, stopping by his cell for conversation and sharing food. Kenny continues to be is very appreciative of all the support he receives.
The latest legal development in Kenneth Smith’s case was that a federal judge dismissed his lawsuit which claimed that Alabama’s lethal injection protocol violates the prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment in the Eight Amendment and also that the Alabama Department of Corrections violated his due process rights under the 14th Amendment because it did not give him the information necessary to knowingly waive his right to choose execution by nitrogen hypoxia instead of lethal injection when inmates had the opportunity to make that choice in 2018. This lawsuit was dismissed even though “ Is it 10 pokes? Is it 11? Is it 100? Is it one hour? What is it?” asked Judge Huffaker. Assistant Attorney General Richard Anderson, who was representing ADOC, did not know the answer. Judge Huffaker dismissed Smith’s lawsuit on October 16.”
We appreciated the remarks by Judge Adalberto Jordan of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals regarding the process of allowing inmates to change their method of execution: “What a mess you’ve caused for everybody. Nothing on paper, no directions on paper, no record of the log of who turned in these forms regardless of who submitted them. Everything is shrouded in mystery. Maybe that’s the way the state of Alabama wanted it to be. But boy, you’re paying the dues now.” No ruling on the issue as of yet.
A topic we often discuss is the relationship between elections and the increase in executions. It seems so very obvious. Not only do we have one execution date 11.17. but the State can’t wait to set Alan Eugene Miller another date as quickly as possible and then after that a date for James Barber. In Alabama torture wins votes!
We joined the coalition of organizations organized by Death Penalty Action calling on President Biden to act on his pledge to end the federal and military death penalty. Here is the link for organizations, churches, businesses etc. bit.ly/BidenAbolishOrgLetter to sign on and it will lead you also to a letter for individuals. Thank you!
The workshop held in Birmingham by Justice and Mercy has already begun to pay off. Last Sunday Shelley Douglass spoke at St Francis Xavier Catholic church in Birmingham. Thank you, we know you won new abolition supporters!
Jefferson County Criminal Circuit Court Judge Tracie Todd was suspended for the second time for 120 days without pay. “The sanctions were for disregarding the opinions of higher courts and inserting personal opinions into her rulings. According to U.S. News, one of the rulings was an attempt to rule Alabama’s death penalty statute unconstitutional. That decision was overturned by the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals and the Alabama Supreme Court.” Thank you Judge Tracie Todd!
In closing and as always, we continue to thank all our generous donors who either gave by going to our website and using the “donate” button or who gave directly. Thank you also to all who took the time to read our notes, commented, liked and shared them on Facebook. You encourage us and make all the difference. Stay safe!