Too Fat to Die

Here’s a story combining two popular recent posts: an Ohio death row inmate says that it would be unconstitutional to kill him by lethal injection because he is overweight. Conveniently, lethal injection is the sole method of capital punishment in Ohio.

Cooey’s public-defender attorneys filed a lawsuit in federal court Friday contending that his weight, the difficulty of finding veins suitable for lethal injection, and a drug he’s taking for migraines and seizures mean that Cooey might suffer “unnecessary pain in the execution of the death sentence.”

The lawsuit said that would violate Cooey’s constitutional rights.

Cooey, 41, is 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighed 275 pounds on May 19, the last time he was on the scale at the Ohio State Penitentiary in Youngstown. A prison official said Cooey has gained weight in the past two months.

It sounds to me like the answer is to put Cooey on a crash diet. They have until October 14 to find a vein.

(h/t Jonathan Adler at Volokh Conspiracy.)


~ by Gabriel Malor on August 6, 2008.

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