RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Lawyers are asking a federal appeals court to stay next week’s planned execution of a Virginia man.
Ricky Gray’s attorneys filed the emergency motion Thursday after a federal judge this week refused to halt the scheduled Jan. 18 execution. Judge Henry E. Hudson had said Gray failed to show that he’s likely to win his case.
Gray’s attorneys argue he still has the right to challenge Virginia’s lethal injection methods as “cruel and unusual punishment.”
The lawyers claim the state’s use of midazolam could be considered “torture” because it cannot effectively render him unconscious before death and has been implicated in several “botched” executions.
Prosecutors argued in a reply against a stay.
Gray was convicted of killing Bryan and Kathryn Harvey and their 9-year-old and 4-year-old daughters in 2006.
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