LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- The Arkansas attorney general's office wants the state's top court to lift stays of execution for six death row inmates who challenged the constitutionality of the state's lethal injection law. They include a man from Harrison.
The attorney general's office filed paperwork last week asking the Arkansas Supreme Court to lift stays for Jack Jones, Marcel Williams, Jason McGhee, Don Davis, Bruce Ward and Stacey Johnson. McGehee is convicted of kidnapping and killing a teenager from Harrison in 1998.
The state's high court struck down the state's lethal injection law last year. The Legislature enacted a new law last month to replace it.
The new law spells out in greater detail the procedures that the state must follow in carrying out executions. It says the state must use a lethal dose of a barbiturate, but leaves it up to Department of Correction to determine which one.
Meanwhile, a state lawmaker filed a bill to end the death penalty in the state. The bill by Sen. Joyce Elliott, D - Little Rock, comes weeks after Gov. Mike Beebe said he'd sign such a measure if passed by the Legislature.
Elliott filed the legislation on Monday. She says she was asked by a group interested in ending the death penalty to file the bill before the deadline to introduce bills on Monday.
Elliott says she's not actively pushing for the bill but wanted to file it in case the group found support for ending the death penalty.
Beebe, a Democrat, said in January he would sign legislation ending the death penalty if it was sent to his desk but said it is not part of his legislative agenda this year.