Governor Bill Haslam delayed
the execution of a death row inmate by 10 days Thursday to allow his electrocution to be carried out "in an orderly and careful manner."
Edmund Zagorski was scheduled to be executed Thursday evening. But a federal court issued a stay on legals findings. (Check the stories below for more details.)
After a Tennessee Supreme Court ruling Monday, Zagorski chose electrocution over the state's new lethal injection method. But state officials said his request could not be carried out in time for his scheduled execution.
Haslam delayed the execution Thursday after the federal court ruling.
Here's his statement from late Thursday afternoon:
“I am granting to Edmund Zagorski a reprieve of 10 days from execution of the sentence of death imposed upon by him by a jury in 1984 which was scheduled to be carried out later today.
"I take seriously the responsibility imposed upon the Tennessee Department of Correction and me by law, and given the federal court’s decision to honor Zagorski’s last-minute decision to choose electrocution as the method of execution, this brief reprieve will give all involved the time necessary to carry out the sentence in an orderly and careful manner.”
Death penalty opponents cancelled a vigil here set for 6 p.m. Thursday after Haslam's announcement.
Zagorski's attorneys say they have petitioned the United States Supreme Court to review Tennessee's new lethal injection protocol.