Nebraska Sup. Ct. Debates Electric Chair
(Andy Warhol's "Electric Chair", 1971)
Nebraska, which currently has 10 men on death row, still uses the electric chair exclusively for executions.
Today, the Nebraska Supreme Court holds oral argument on the constitutionality of frying its death inmates.
The case being argued involves an appeal filed by death-row inmate Raymond Mata Jr. But it also could affect the case of death row inmate Carey Dean Moore, who came within days of being executed in May.
The court cited the Mata appeal when it abruptly halted Moore's scheduled execution. The court said the legal questions surrounding the electric chair needed to be resolved before another inmate was put to death in Nebraska.
Nebraska legislators were one vote short of ending the death penalty this year. The answer is not to switch from the electric chair to lethal injection, but from the electric chair to life without the possibility of parole.
If the Nebraska high court tosses Old Sparky it will leave the state without a death penalty. Hopefully, one more legislator will change his mind when it comes time to consider a new death penalty law in the state.
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