UPDATE 2: After Georgia’s high court and the U.S. Supreme Court rejected last minute appeals, Lynd was executed. He was pronounced dead at 7:51 p.m. Tuesday at the Diagnostic and Classification prison in Jackson, Ga.
UPDATE: Mississippi inmate Earl Wesley Berry’s execution had been set for May 21, meaning that Georgie could now become the first state to carry out the death penalty since Baze v. Rees if the execution of William Earl Lynd goes forward at 7 p.m. today as planned. More from the AP.
The first executions since last fall – when the U.S. Supreme Court halted lethal injections which considering their constitutionality – could take place today and tomorrow.
Today Mississippi death row inmate Earl Wesley Berry could face his death sentence for his kidnapping and murder conviction. Tomorrow Georgia could execute its first prisoner – Earl Lynd, who was convicted of murder – since the Supreme Court’s de facto moratorium on executions pending the decision in Baze v. Rees. Last month the Court ruled that the three-drug lethal injection combination used in Kentucky and most other states did not constitute cruel and unusual punishment.
Last-minute appeals are underway in both cases, and pro- and anti-death penalty protesters are set to hold demonstrations in both states.