Arkansas Supreme Court

Bruce Ward
adc.arkansas.gov

An Arkansas death row inmate with a case pending before the state Supreme Court wants its justices to prevent his execution while he pursues another case before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Bruce Ward had been set to die last April during a string of executions. He wants the U.S. Supreme Court to consider whether he should have been entitled to the use of an independent mental health professional at his trial. The Arkansas Supreme Court said March 1 that Ward never met the minimum threshold for such assistance.

Don Davis
Department of Correction

An Arkansas death row inmate out of appeals at the state level wants another chance before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Don Davis on Wednesday asked the Arkansas Supreme Court to recall a day-old order ending his most recent appeal.

Davis intends to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to consider whether Arkansas' justices erred when they said he wasn't entitled to independent mental health experts before and during his trial. The U.S. Supreme Court considered a similar case last year.

Arkansas officials and a medical supply company want to toss out a lawsuit over the firm's claims the state misleadingly obtained an execution drug now that the prison system's supply of the drug has expired.

Attorneys for the state and McKesson Medical-Surgical, Inc. on Monday asked the state Supreme Court to dismiss the case over Arkansas' now-expired supply of vecuronium bromide, one of three drugs used in the state's lethal injection process. Arkansas' supply of the drug expired on March 1.

The Arkansas Supreme Court upheld the capital murder conviction of a Texarkana woman serving life in prison for killing a woman in her square dancing club who was having an affair with her husband.

The high court ruled Thursday that there was enough evidence to support the jury's finding that 69-year-old Virginia Hyatt is responsible for the shooting death of Patricia Wheelington in December 2013.

Leslie Rutledge
Governor's Office / You Tube

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge says she will likely ask the governor to set an execution date for a convicted killer after a ruling by the state Supreme Court.

On Thursday the high court said two inmates – who came within hours of being executed last year – were not entitled to special assistance from mental health professionals during their trials.

Bruce Ward and Don Davis won last minute stays after claiming independent psychiatrists should have been available to help develop trial strategies.

Anne Pressly
KATV-Channel 7

The Arkansas Supreme Court says the mother of a television news anchor killed in a 2008 attack can move forward with a complaint that hospital employees not involved in the journalist's medical care acted outrageously as the woman was dying.

Justices said Thursday that St. Vincent Infirmary could be released from part of a lawsuit filed after the workers looked at Anne Pressly's medical records. The court dismissed a cross-appeal, however, which will let a Pulaski County judge decide whether the employees acted in an "extreme and outrageous" manner.

Voter ID Vote photo ID
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

A lawsuit challenging Arkansas' new voter ID law has been filed, arguing the requirement causes the same problems as a nearly identical law that was struck down four years ago.

The lawsuit filed by a voter in Pulaski County Circuit Court on Wednesday is challenging the measure's constitutionality ahead of the state's May 22 primary. Early voting for the primary begins May 7.

David Sterling
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

An attorney for the Arkansas Department of Human Services says he plans on challenging a state Supreme Court justice who's seeking re-election this year.

DHS Chief Counsel David Sterling told The Associated Press he plans to run against state Supreme Court Justice Courtney Goodson in the May judicial election.

Sterling ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination for attorney general in the 2014 election.

Goodson was targeted by outside groups in her failing bid for chief justice two years ago.

Wendell Griffen
Brian Chilson / Arkansas Times

An Arkansas judge disqualified from handling execution cases after participating in an anti-death penalty demonstration says his lawsuit against the state's highest court should be allowed to move forward.

Attorneys for Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen asked a federal court Tuesday to deny motions by state Supreme Court justices to dismiss his lawsuit challenging his disqualification.

File photo. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge (R).
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Arkansas' attorney general is asking the state's highest court to lift a judge's order that the state go into mediation with three same-sex couples over how to change a birth certificate law that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled illegally favors heterosexual parents.

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge asked the state Supreme Court Wednesday to vacate Pulaski County Circuit Judge Tim Fox's orders requiring mediation on how to change the birth certificate law. Rutledge also challenges Fox's order that she personally attend the mediation, scheduled for Saturday.

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