Enforcement Rule Changes for Alabama Draw Comment from American Civil Liberties Union

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WHNT) — On Thursday, the Alabama Supreme Court changed its rules to limit review of “palpable error” in death penalty cases and changed execution deadlines.

The first change comes after the three-member dispute, and it will limit the ability of death row inmates to appeal – with the new rule limiting review of manifest error in death penalty cases.

“What this means is that those sentenced to death will suffer constitutional violations that will not be addressed by the reviewing courts and that we will execute people wrongfully sentenced,” explained Allison, senior legal adviser to the ‘American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Alabama. Holman.

The mandatory single error view has existed under Rule 45A for 44 years.

“The rule change that was introduced on Thursday even says if there was a constitutional violation if the attorney didn’t object [to] a trial,” Hollman said, “appeal courts are no longer required to review and remedy these constitutional violations.”

“It’s a big change,” acknowledges Hollman. “His [a] change that we did not expect and that changes the law after 44 years.

Additionally, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey requested changes to the court’s rules on executions in December — but did not specifically ask the court to give the governor’s office the power to set execution deadlines. execution.

Prior to the change, the Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) had to complete executions within 24 hours.

If an execution attempt failed, the department had to seek a new execution date from the state Supreme Court.

Hollman added that these additional changes are problematic.

“What is troubling about this is that we recognize that the Department of Corrections was basically botching executions…now we are giving them the power to torture people for as many hours for as many days as they want. need, for the execution to take place. .”

Now Governor Ivey will be able to issue a warrant of execution for a period of time rather than a single day.

The new rules take effect immediately.


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