Missouri death row inmate Ernest Johnson loses appeal

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Ernest Johnson.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) _ A man on Missouri death row for killing three convenience store workers in 1994 has lost on appeal that claimed a medical condition would make lethal injection too painful.

U.S. District Chief Judge Greg Kays found Friday that Ernest Johnson hadn’t successfully argued that Missouri’s lethal injection drug, pentobarbital, could trigger seizures due to a brain condition. Johnson still has part of a benign tumor in his brain, and surgery to remove the rest of the tumor in 2008 forced removal of up to 20 percent of his brain tissue.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that the defense doesn’t explain the effects of pentobarbital on seizures or defective brains.

Johnson’s attorneys, Jeremy Weis, told The Associated Press he’s “disappointed” but plans to amend the complaint and refile it.
Information from: Columbia Daily Tribune

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