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Lethal injection concerns part of bid to spare Missouri man

February 9, 2015

ST. LOUIS (AP) — An attorney for a Missouri inmate who’s scheduled to die this week is seeking to halt the execution over concerns about the state’s secretive process of obtaining and using lethal injection drugs.

Walter Timothy Storey is scheduled to die at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday (0501 GMT) for killing a neighbor in St. Charles in 1990. After a state-record 10 executions in 2014, Storey would be the first person put to death this year in Missouri.

Missouri refuses to name the compounding pharmacy where it obtains the pentobarbital used in executions and won’t disclose details about testing of the drug. Attorney Jennifer Herndon said Monday that creates the risk that Storey could suffer a painful death, in violation of the U.S. Constitution.

Herndon also claims Missouri violates its own protocol by using a second drug, midazolam. Missouri officials have said the state offers midazolam as a sedative to help calm the condemned inmate before the execution, but the state does not consider use of the sedative to be part of the execution process. The inmate can opt not to take it.

The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has already turned down the stay request. Herndon has appealed to the Missouri Supreme Court and plans to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. She also will seek clemency from Gov. Jay Nixon, she said.

Storey, 47, has been sentenced to death three separate times in the Feb. 2, 1990, death of Jill Frey, a 36-year-old special education teacher.

Storey was living with his mother when he became upset over his pending divorce. He was drinking beer and ran out of money so he went to Frey’s neighboring apartment to steal money for more beer.

Court records show he climbed her balcony and entered through an unlocked sliding glass door. He attacked Frey in her bedroom, slitting her throat, breaking six ribs and causing other injuries.

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