Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Nebraska Committee Rejects Lethal Injection Bill

November 20, 2002|From Associated Press

LINCOLN, Neb. — The Nebraska Legislature's Judiciary Committee rejected a bill Tuesday that would have changed the state's method of execution from the electric chair to death by injection.

Nebraska is the only state with the chair as its sole means of execution, which some fear could lead a court to rule the state's death penalty was cruel and unusual punishment.

But Sen. Kermit Brashear, the panel's chairman, said there is no immediate need to end Nebraska's use of the electric chair. The bill was rejected, 5 to 2.

Lawmakers are meeting in a special session to deal with constitutional questions in the state's death-penalty laws, after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June that said juries, not judges, must decide whether a murder merits the death penalty.

In Nebraska, judges have made that determination since the Legislature decided in the 1970s that there was the potential of bias by juries.

Alabama had been the only other state using the electric chair exclusively.

But Gov. Donald Siegelman signed a bill earlier this year making lethal injection the primary method of execution there, unless the inmate requests the electric chair.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|