Execution Of Inmate With Dementia Is Blocked

2019

The U.S. Supreme Court votes 5-3 to block the execution of an inmate with dementia. Convicted of killing a police officer, the Alabama man has been on death row for more than 30 years and has suffered a series of strokes. He says he doesn’t remember the crime. The majority opinion in Madison v. Alabama sends the case back to the lower court to ensure that, if the inmate is to be executed, he understands why. The Court says a precedent that bars the execution of people who lack a “rational” understanding of why they are being executed may apply to inmates with dementia.