NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Tennessee's attorney general has asked the state Supreme Court to set nine execution dates in a move that bucks the national trend of shying away from using capital punishment.
Attorney General Herbert Slatery filed the request last week, with seven of the nine men being represented by the federal public defender's office.
- State of TN v. Byron Black (Davidson County)
- State of TN v. Tony V. Carruthers (Shelby County)
- State of TN v. Henry Eugene Hodges (Davidson County)
- State of TN v. Donald Ray Middlebrooks (Davidson County)
- State of TN v. Harold Wayne Nichols (Hamilton County)
- State of TN v. Farris Genner Morris (Madison County)
- State of TN v. Pervis T. Payne (Shelby County)
- State of TN v. Oscar Franklin Smith (Davidson County)
- State of TN v. Gary Wayne Sutton (Blount County)
Assistant Federal Public Defender Kelley Henry said she was surprised by the request and would oppose the motion.
In Tennessee, the attorney general can request execution dates once juries have delivered death sentences and inmates have exhausted their three-tier appeals process in state courts and the U.S. Supreme Court. The state Supreme Court then schedules the executions.
Tennessee has executed five people in just over a year with two more executions scheduled in the coming months.
Last week, Slatery also filed an appeal to challenge a Nashville judge’s order to remove Abu-Ali Abdur’Rahman from death row and allow him to serve three consecutive life sentences. The attorney general’s office called the order “unlawful” and “unprecedented.”