Catholic leaders denounce rejection of federal death penalty appeal

When the Supreme Court announced June 29 that it would not hear an appeal by federal death-row inmates challenging the method to be used in their upcoming executions, a longtime advocate against capital punishment said the court “abdicated its legal and moral responsibilities.”

“This means that the federal government will likely execute four people” starting in July “using an untested lethal injection protocol during a global pandemic without any real oversight from the Supreme Court,” tweeted Sister Helen Prejean, a Sister of St. Joseph of Medaille.

The unsigned three-sentence order from the court said Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor would have heard the inmates’ appeal.

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