Tennessee to electrocute second inmate in as many months

Death row inmate chooses electric chair over 'inhumane' lethal injection

On Thursday at 7 p.m., barring any last-minute court or political intervention, it will be Miller's turn.

States have moved away from the electric chair in recent decades - and no state uses electrocution as its main execution method anymore.

Death row inmate David Earl Miller is scheduled to die by electric chair on Thursday. Both had unsuccessfully argued in court that Tennessee's lethal injection method causes a prolonged and torturous death.

Federal public defender Stephen Kissinger, who represents Miller, said the court didn't consider "years of horrific abuse, sexual assault and neglect that left Miller with post traumatic stress disorder and other mental health issues that should have blocked the death penalty". Dunham is the executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, which doesn't take a stand on the death penalty but is critical of its application. Miller, who has been on death row for 36 years, was sentenced to death for the 1981 murder of 23-year-old Lee Standifer in Knoxville.

Miller chose the electric chair as allowed by authorities.

The execution plan comes almost two decades after Tennessee adopted lethal injection.

Death row inmate chooses electric chair over 'inhumane' lethal injection
Tennessee inmate chooses electric chair over lethal injection

First used in 1890, execution by electric chair was developed as a "humane alternative" to hanging.

Some inmates have argued death by electric chair rather than lethal injection is "the lesser of two evils".

Gov. Bill Haslam ordered a brief reprieve to "give all involved the time necessary to carry out the sentence in an orderly and careful manner".

David Earl Miller used a fire poker to repeatedly bludgeon and stab Lee Standifer, a young woman who was born with mild brain damage and with whom he was on a first date almost 40 years ago when he suddenly decided she had to die. Standifer was beaten to death with a fireplace poker and stabbed several times. He was the second inmate in more than a month to choose electrocution.

If the execution goes through, Miller will be the third death row inmate put to death this year, and the second to die by electrocution.

A Tennessee death row inmate has selected a last meal of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, biscuits and coffee as he awaits word on his execution from the U.S. Supreme Court.

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