Mississippi Supreme Court questions suit over execution drug

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – A lawyer for a death row inmate is telling the Mississippi Supreme Court that his client should be able to challenge plans to execute him using a lethal injection drug compounded from raw ingredients.

The state, though, argued Wednesday that Charles Ray Crawford should have raised those claims in other appeals and can’t file a fresh lawsuit in a trial court.

Several justices are giving a hostile reception to Crawford’s case, suggesting it could become a delay strategy, and saying there appears to be no precedent for Crawford’s demand.

The Hinds County suit challenged Mississippi’s decision to buy ingredients for an execution drug and have a pharmacist combine them, saying that risks ineffective or contaminated drugs.

Crawford was sentenced to death for the 1992 slaying of Kristy Ray in Tippah County.