Justice Derides Injection; Says Eight Belles Died More Humanely

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) - A Supreme Court Justice is weighing in on the tragic death of Eight Belles after the Kentucky Derby.

John Paul Stevens says the euthanized filly probably died more humanely than death row prisoners do.

He was speaking in Tennessee at the conference of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Stevens says he learned that it is against the law in Kentucky to kill animals with one of the drugs used to execute prisoners.

The speech comes on the heels of a Supreme Court ruling that shot down a challenge to the three-drug lethal injection protocol by two Kentucky inmates. Stevens voted with the majority on the question of lethal injections but said for the first time that he now believes the death penalty is unconstitutional.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-05-11-08 0800EDT


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  • by gail Location: winchester on May 12, 2008 at 04:48 AM
    I agree with you Larry... Who cares if a murder feels pain? Do you think he thought about the pain he was inflicting when he killed his VICTIM! No! So you know what they need to feel the SAME PAIN they inflicted on their victims. I think if you murger someone by drowning them then that is how you should be killed, so on so forth with being shot or strangled, you should get the same treatment and die the same way! That would be justice!
  • by blackmoon7 on May 11, 2008 at 05:23 PM
    judge I think inmates die more humanely than their victims! Maybe you would like to think that out again or you you really care
  • by Larry Location: Lexington on May 11, 2008 at 03:42 PM
    Horses are more important than murderers. Who cares if murderers die with pain.
  • by Law Man Location: Washington, DC on May 11, 2008 at 02:34 PM
    He is an ignorant judge then.
  • by newswatcher Location: lexington on May 11, 2008 at 08:53 AM
    Am I missing somethin? Do inmates on death row have their legs broken before they receive their lethal injection? I am shocked at the comparison made between the two by a man intelligent enought to be on the state's Supreme Court. The difference is that euthanasia is designed to relieve misery, lethal injection is designed to mete punishment. As far as Eight Belles dying more humanely than condemned prisoners, one only needs to see the photos of her wrangled front legs to realize that her death was not painless. In my opinion, those who are convicted of a crime worhty of being sentenced to death, deserve to experience appropriate consequences. If you don't want to die by lethal injection, then don't commit a crime that will place you in that position. These criminal gave no mercy to their victims, who no doubt suffered fear and anguish in their last moments. Why should we worry about their comfort? Rest in peace, Eight Belles. I hope you are running free with our boy, Barbaro.
  • by Steve Location: Lexington on May 11, 2008 at 06:34 AM
    Justice Stephens is right! The horse is treated more humanely than humans are...it's whole life it was treated better than most humans are. Yet the nuts at PETA would have you believe it was abused and tortured...that's just their way of getting your sympathy and ultimately...your money.
  • by Pro-Capital Punishment Location: Kentucky on May 11, 2008 at 05:53 AM
    An inmate convicted of a horrible crime and sentenced to death does not deserve humane death consideration. They gave that up when they took another life.

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