Alabama: Pastor can hold inmate’s hand during execution

Alabama News
Willie B. Smith III

FILE – This undated file photo provided by the Alabama Department of Corrections shows Willie B. Smith III. Alabama has rescheduled the execution of Willie B. Smith III who had his lethal injection called off in February when the U.S. Supreme Court sided with his request to have his personal pastor with him in the death chamber. The Alabama Supreme Court has now set an Oct. 21 execution date. (Alabama Department of Corrections via AP)

October 02 2021 06:00 pm

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama will allow an inmate’s pastor to hold his hand during an execution scheduled for next month.

In a court document, lawyers described the new procedure that will be used next month. Willie B. Smith is scheduled to be executed Oct. 21.

Alabama officials in February called off Smith’s execution after the U.S. Supreme Court maintained an injunction saying he could not be executed without his pastor present in the chamber.  

A Texas death row inmate won a reprieve Wednesday after claiming the state was violating his religious freedom by not letting his pastor lay hands on him

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