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Condemned inmate’s medical condition at center of debate

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ST. LOUIS (AP) _ The attorney for a condemned Missouri inmate says the man faces a potentially “gruesome and painful” execution because of a rare medical condition that compromises the man’s veins and causes multiple tumors in his head and throat.

Russell Bucklew is scheduled to die by injection Tuesday evening for killing a former girlfriend’s new boyfriend in 1996 in eastern Missouri.

Bucklew was moments away from execution in May 2014 when the U.S. Supreme Court halted it amid concerns about Bucklew’s medical condition. He suffers from cavernous hemangioma, a rare ailment that causes weakened and malformed blood vessels, as well as blood-filled tumors in his nose and throat.

Attorney Cheryl Pilate says executing Bucklew would violate his constitutional guarantee against cruel and unusual punishment.

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