St Louis: A man convicted of abducting, raping and killing a Kansas City teenager in 1989 will be executed using a lethal drug provided by a new supplier if last-minute appeals on Tuesday don't stay Missouri's fourth execution in as many months.
Michael Taylor of Kansas City was scheduled for lethal injection at 12:01 a.m. (0601 GMT) Wednesday. An appeal was pending before the U.S. Supreme Court late Tuesday night, but the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Taylor's request for a rehearing and Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon denied a clemency request.
Taylor's attorneys have questioned Missouri's use of an unnamed compounding pharmacy to provide the pentobarbital for his execution. They have also raised concerns that the state executes men before appeals are complete, and claim Taylor's original trial attorney was so overworked that she encouraged him to plead guilty to lessen her own workload.
After years of using a three-drug execution method, Missouri switched to pentobarbital as a single fatal drug late last year. State officials say there were no outward signs of distress in three recent executions that all relied on a single dose of pentobarbital.
Last week, the Oklahoma-based Apothecary Shoppe agreed that it would not supply the pentobarbital for Taylor's execution. Attorney General Chris Koster's office announced in a court filing on Feb. 19 that a new provider had been found, but has refused to name the pharmacy, citing the state's execution protocol that allows for the manufacturer to remain anonymous.
Taylor's attorneys say use of the drug without naming the compounding pharmacy could cause the inmate pain and suffering because no one can check if the operation is legitimate and has not been accused of any violations.