Tennessee executes longest serving death row inmate using electric chair after court battle

A death row inmate in Tennessee grew to become the second individual executed within the US state utilizing the electrical chair in simply over a month.

David Earl Miller, 61, was pronounced lifeless at 7.25pm at a maximum-security jail in Nashville on Thursday evening.

He was convicted of killing 23-year-old mentally in poor health lady Lee Standifer in 1981, and had spent 36 years on loss of life row – the longest of any inmate in Tennessee.

Earlier on Thursday, Governor Invoice Haslam refused Miller’s request to commute his sentence to life in jail.

Lawyer Stephen Kissinger mentioned Miller’s final phrases earlier than the primary jolt of electrical present hit him have been: “Beats being on loss of life row.”

It follows a long-running courtroom battle over the strategy of execution.

Each Miller and inmate Edmund Zagorski – executed in Tennessee on 1 November – selected the electrical chair over lethal injection following a collection of botched drug executions throughout which inmates have appeared to undergo.

In latest many years, states have moved away from the electrical chair and no state now makes use of electrocution as its foremost execution methodology, based on Robert Dunham, government director of the Dying Penalty Info Centre.

Protesters towards the loss of life penalty outdoors Nashville jail earlier than David Earl Miller’s execution (AP)

In Tennessee, nonetheless, inmates whose crimes have been dedicated earlier than 1999 can select electrocution over deadly injection.

Authorized groups for each Miller and Zagorski argued in courtroom that Tennessee’s present midazolam-based methodology of injection causes a protracted and torturous loss of life.

They pointed to the state’s August execution of Billy Ray Irick, who took round 20 minutes to die, throughout which era he coughed and spluttered earlier than turning a darkish purple.

The courts mentioned Miller couldn’t problem the constitutionality of the electrical chair as a result of he selected it, despite the fact that his lawyer argued the selection was coerced by the specter of one thing even worse.

In Alabam​a, greater than 50 loss of life row inmates have opted to be executed using a nitrogen gas chamber fairly than face deadly injection.

No witnesses from both Miller’s household or Standifer’s have been current for the execution.

However a Division of Correction spokeswoman Neysa Taylor learn a short assertion from a girl from Ohio who didn’t need her identify given.

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“After an extended line of victims he has left, it’s time to be finished. It’s time for him to pay for what he has finished to Lee.”

Miller’s loss of life was solely the third time Tennessee had put an inmate to loss of life within the electrical chair since 1960.

Extra reporting by companies

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