In flurry of rulings, Arkansas’ plan to execute inmates by month’s end is halted – Los Angeles Times

The executions are halted — for now.

After a flurry of last-minute legal challenges, a pair of judges have issued temporary injunctions effectively blocking Arkansas from executing six men it planned to put to death this month.

The state was prepared to execute the men in an 11-day span starting Monday, a move that drew rebuke from death penalty opponents who said it was cruel and unusual punishment, and increased the likelihood of a botched execution. (Initially, Arkansas officials had been prepared to execute eight convicted murderers this month, but recent legal rulings had already halted two executions.)

On Saturday, a federal judge granted a preliminary injunction requested by the inmates to block the executions, ruling that there is a significant possibility that the men could successfully challenge the state’s execution protocol.

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