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Prisoner Can’t Be Executed On His Back Because Of Health Condition

A death row prisoner complained he was too sick to be executed because he can't lie on his back.

Columbus, OH – A prison doctor examined an inmate who is scheduled to be executed this month, and found that allowing him to sit up to be executed is a “reasonable accommodation.”

Alva Campbell, age 69, has multiple health issues that make it difficult for him to lie flat on his back, according to Fox News.

His attorneys filed a request with the Ohio Parole board on Oct. 12, asking that “mercy” be shown for the elderly prisoner who murdered an 18-year-old boy during a carjacking in 1997, according to AL.com.

They made the same request of Ohio Governor John Kasich.

Prosecutors said that Campbell’s health claims are ironic given that he faked paralysis to escape on the day he murdered Charles Dials.

Prison officials said that they had tested Campbell on Oct. 19, and that he became mildly agitated when they tried to lower him to a normal execution position.

“Given the events observed at this examination and the patient’s underlying pulmonary and mental health disorders, it would be reasonable to make an accommodation for the patient during the execution process that would permit him to lay in a semi-recumbent position,” said Dr. James McWeeney, a contractor for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.

Ron O’Brien, Franklin County Prosecutor, called Campbell “the poster child for the death penalty,” according to the Daily Mail.

In 1992, Campbell was paroled, after serving 20 years for killing a man in a Cleveland bar.

He faked paralysis, and was in a wheelchair being transported to a court hearing on several armed robbery charges, when he overpowered a Franklin County deputy.

Campbell stole the deputy’s gun, carjacked Dials, and drove him around for hours, before he shot the teenager twice in the head, as he cowered in the footwell of his own vehicle.

In preparation for his execution, a prison nurse examined Campbell’s arms and said that he doesn’t have veins suitable for an IV on either arm.

Campbell, a two-pack-a-day smoker for decades before he stopped smoking nine years ago, has severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder.

His attorneys claim that Campbell may have lung cancer, and said that he uses a walker, uses an external colostomy bag, and requires four breathing treatments a day. They also claim that he was beaten, tortured, and sexually abused as a child.

Despite his attorney’s pleas, the Ohio Parole Board rejected Campbell’s plea for mercy last month, and the prisoner is scheduled to be executed on Nov. 15.

Corrections officials said it “has taken Campbell’s medical conditions under consideration for planning of possible accommodations for his execution,” meaning that they don’t consider his health a legitimate reason not to execute him.

Gov. Kasich hasn’t responded to Campbell’s request yet. In the past, he has granted clemency to some prisoners while denying others.

GinnyReed - November Thu, 2017

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