Thursday, January 27, 2005

Michael Ross: Legal Update II

In another 5-4 vote, the United States Supreme Court overturned the stay of execution granted to Michael Ross (well actually to those acting in Ross' interests) by District Court Judge Robert Chatigny earlier this week. There is one more appeal pending before the Second Circuit. Chances are, no matter how the Second Circuit rules on that appeal, the case will again go to the United States Supreme Court. Nevertheless, the State of Connecticut has scheduled Ross' execution for 2:00am Saturday morning. Barring any emergency stays to grant the Court more time for review (unlikely), Connecticut will go through with its first lethal injection and its first execution in over forty years.

Curiously, the USSC vote was 5-4. The Chief Justice has been working from home and has not been hearing oral argument or voting on many of the other non-emergency cases on the Court's 2004-2005 calendar. Yet, he took part in this vote (and has in other death penalty stay cases). As such, there was no possibility of a tie.

Supreme Court lifts stay on Ross execution

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