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Alabama man’s execution was botched, advocacy group alleges

Alabama corrections officials apparently botched an inmate’s execution last month, an anti-death penalty group alleges, citing the length of time that passed before the prisoner received the lethal injection and a private autopsy indicating his arm may have been cut to find a vein.

Joe Nathan James Jr. was put to death July 28 at an Alabama prison for the 1994 shooting death of his former girlfriend. The execution was carried out more than three hours after the U.S. Supreme Court denied a request for a stay.

“Subjecting a prisoner to three hours of pain and suffering is the definition of cruel and unusual punishment,” Maya Foa, director of Reprieve US Forensic Justice Initiative, a human rights group that opposes the death penalty, said in a statement. “States cannot continue to pretend that the abhorrent practice of lethal injection is in any way humane.”

Read the full story in the Associated Press.