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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Execution staff have COVID-19 after inmate put to death

As the U.S. government rushes to put inmates to death in a pandemic before President Donald Trump leaves office, the Justice Department disclosed that eight staff members who took part in an execution last month tested positive for the coronavirus and five of those staffers will take part in executions scheduled for this week.

Trump ratchets up pace of executions before Biden inaugural

As Donald Trump’s presidency winds down, his administration is ratcheting up the pace of federal executions despite a surge of coronavirus cases in prisons, announcing plans for five starting Thursday and concluding just days before the Jan. 20 inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.

Senate votes again to strike death penalty statute

Although Washington’s death penalty has been placed on hold by the governor and ruled unconstitutional by the state Supreme Court, the Senate voted Friday to eliminate capital punishment from state law.

An avowed racist who orchestrated one of the most gruesome hate crimes in U.S. history has been executed in Texas for the dragging death of a black man

John William King, who was white, received lethal injection for the slaying nearly 21 years ago of James Byrd Jr., who was chained to the back of a truck and dragged for nearly 3 miles along a secluded road in the piney woods outside Jasper, Texas. The 49-year-old Byrd was alive for at least 2 miles (3 kilometers) before his body was ripped to pieces in the early morning hours of June 7, 1998.

Arkansas faces new court fight over sedative for executions

A federal lawsuit filed by death row inmates has renewed a court fight over whether the sedative Arkansas uses for lethal injections causes torturous executions, two years after it raced to put eight inmates to death in 11 days before its batch expired

In televised debate with Dave Wilson, House candidate Jenny Graham says death penalty not racially disproportionate

In a debate with Democrat Dave Wilson, Republican Jenny Graham correctly said there were more white people than black people on death row and that she supported maintaining the death penalty. Wilson said he had concerns about the sentences being handed out disproportionately, a contention that has been supported by research conducted by the University of Washington.

Death penalty ruling anguishes Spokane Valley mother who lost daughter in 1996 attacks

Sherry Shaver felt some solace on the day in 1997 when a jury recommended capital punishment for the man who killed her daughter in Spokane Valley. But the ensuing 20 years brought more grief and frustration, as Shaver watched the killer, Dwayne Woods, exhaust his legal appeals and repeatedly stave off his execution. Woods’ sentencing, it turns out, played a role in the state Supreme Court’s decision to outlaw the death penalty. As a black man, he had become part of a troubling statistic in Washington’s criminal justice system.

Oklahoma officials plan to use nitrogen for executions

Oklahoma officials say they plan to use nitrogen gas to execute inmates once the state resumes using the death penalty, marking the first time a U.S. state would use the gas to carry out capital punishment.

California death penalty measure survives, but with limits

A voter-approved measure to speed up executions in California was upheld Thursday by the state Supreme Court, but justices rejected arguments that a provision setting a five-year limit on appeals was mandatory, raising doubts that the law will succeed in accelerating death sentences.