National roundup: Lethal injection case in Arizona headed to High court

July 21
ARIZONA
Lethal injection case headed to High court

A case challenging the state’s refusal to reveal detailed information about the lethal combination it will use to put an inmate to death is headed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit denied Arizona’s request for a rehearing Monday after a three-member panel of judges put on hold the execution of Joseph Rudolph Wood until the state reveals information, such as the makers of the drugs and how the state developed its method for legal injections.

Wood’s attorneys argue that he has a First Amendment right to detailed information and that such information has been historically available and beneficial to the public. Attorneys for the state argue that Wood does not have a right to the details.

Stephanie Grisham, spokeswoman for the attorney general’s office, says the state will file an application with the U.S. Supreme Court asking it to dismiss the stay on the execution.

— Associated Press

FLORIDA
Gays still must wait for marriage licenses

A Florida Keys judge who last week ruled the state’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional refused Monday to allow gay couples to begin marrying in Monroe County, citing a pending appeal by the state attorney general.

Monroe County Circuit Judge Luis Garcia rejected a motion to allow immediate weddings filed by attorneys for Aaron Huntsman and William Lee Jones, Key West bartenders whose lawsuit successfully challenged the ban.

Garcia ruled last week that the ban on same-sex marriage added to the state constitution by Florida voters in 2008 is discriminatory and violates gay people’s right to equal treatment under the law.

Garcia initially ruled marriage licenses could be issued to gay couples in Monroe County beginning Tuesday. But that was blocked by an automatic stay triggered when Attorney General Pam Bondi (R) immediately filed notice that the state will appeal.

— Associated Press

Jury selection begins in killing of black teen: Jury selection began on Monday for a white suburban Detroit homeowner charged with killing a black teenager with a shotgun blast to the face after she knocked on his door seeking help early one November morning. Theodore Wafer, 55, faces a second-degree murder charge and up to life in prison for the killing of Renisha McBride, 19, on his front porch. The racially charged case has sparked protests in Dearborn Heights, Mich., and comparisons to the 2012 shooting death of unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.

— Reuters

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