Judge halts Arkansas plan to execute inmates by end of month
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - A federal judge has halted Arkansas' already compromised plan to execute several inmates over an 11-day period starting next week.
U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker on Saturday granted a preliminary injunction requested by the inmates to block the executions. Arkansas was set to execute the first inmate by lethal injection on Monday night.
The state originally planned to execute eight inmates, but two had previously been blocked by state and federal courts. A state judge earlier Friday blocked the state from using a lethal injection drug, a move that could also halt the executions altogether.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson had scheduled the executions to take place before the state's supply of one of its lethal injection drugs expires at the end of the month. Arkansas hasn't executed an inmate since 2005 because of drug shortages and legal challenges.
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