Attorney for condemned Tennessee inmates unsure if ruling means delay - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Attorney for condemned Tennessee inmates unsure if ruling means delay

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) - Attorneys for some death row inmates in Tennessee say U-S Supreme Court rulings on lethal injection and DNA evidence could delay some executions, including two set June 28th in Tennessee, but a moratorium on executions is unlikely.

The state's deputy post conviction defender in Tennessee, Paul Morrow, says it could affect anyone under a death sentence.

The high court's decisions allow condemned inmates to make last-minute claims that chemicals used in lethal injections amount to cruel and unusual punishment and make it easier to challenge convictions with new evidence, such as DNA.

Morrow's agency is working on appeals for more than 30 of Tennessee's 103 Death Row inmates. An attorney for condemned inmate Sedley Alley, who is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection June 28th, said she was already pursuing DNA requests for Alley in two courts.

Attorney Kelley Henry said the DNA ruling "strengthens the arguments we are making," but there won't be any stay of execution until some court orders they have the right to do the testing.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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