Death row inmates in Tennessee raise using fire squad in legal challenge

cartridge in the receiver

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Death row offenders say using a firing squad would be more humane than Tennessee’s lethal injection method.

The Tennessean reports a federal lawsuit was filed Tuesday by attorneys representing death row offenders David Earl Miller, Nicholas Todd Sutton and Stephen Michael West. Miller is set to be executed this year.

The lawsuit says Billy Ray Irick was tortured to death when he was injected with toxic chemicals. It argues that using the same drugs in another execution would violate constitutional bans on cruel and unusual punishment.

They suggest other methods, including a firing squad, are preferable and constitutional ways to die compared to Tennessee’s three-drug execution protocol. However, it’s unlikely Tennessee would use a firing squad, given that the electric chair is the legal alternative to lethal injection.

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