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US Supreme Court stays Virginia lethal injection execution

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] on Wednesday afternoon issued an order [DOC text] staying the execution of Virginia death row inmate Christopher Scott Emmett [advocacy profile], who had been scheduled to be put to death at 9 PM ET. The Court stayed the execution "pending final disposition of the appeal by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit or further order of this Court." Emmett has been convicted of capital murder and robbery.

The Supreme Court has agreed to consider Baze v. Rees [docket; cert. petition, PDF], a case challenging lethal injection as unconstitutional under the Eighth Amendment. Since the Court granted certiorari, several states have stayed executions pending the outcome of that case, including a Nevada court, which on Monday issued a stay of all executions in the state [JURIST report]. Reuters has more. The Washington Post has additional coverage.

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