Backers of Kansas death penalty bill renewing push

Topeka Statehouse (AP Photo/John Milburn)
Topeka Statehouse (AP Photo/John Milburn)

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A botched execution in Oklahoma isn’t causing Kansas legislators to reconsider a bill aimed at expediting appeals in the state’s capital murder cases.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Jeff King said Wednesday that Oklahoma’s experience shows the need to ensure that Kansas uses the most humane and foolproof execution method possible. But King said the state still needs to ensure that Kansas juries’ decisions in capital cases are carried out.

The bill sets deadlines for attorneys to file legal arguments with the Kansas Supreme Court. The state enacted its current capital punishment law in 1994 but has yet to execute any convicted murderers.

In Oklahoma, condemned convicted murderer Clayton Lockett died Tuesday of an apparent heart attack after the execution procedure was halted after it started.

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