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Federal court upholds March 20 execution of Missouri inmate
By kbia.org- Rachel Lippmann
Published: 03/07/2018

A federal appeals court has okayed the execution of a Missouri man who suffers from a medical condition he says would make the lethal injection unconstitutionally painful.

Russell Bucklew, 49, was sentenced to death in 1996 for shooting and killing a romantic rival, and kidnapping and raping his ex-girlfriend. His execution is set for March 20.

Bucklew has cavernous hemangioma, which causes his blood vessels to form tumors inside his body, especially in areas like the nose and throat. The federal civil rights lawsuit filed in 2014, just days before his originally scheduled execution, said the disorder means the execution drug, pentobarbital, will not circulate well enough to be effective. The tumors could also burst under the stress, the suit said, causing Bucklew to choke on his own blood.

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