The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday knocked down a stay of execution for Arizona Death Row prisoner Joseph Wood, who is scheduled to be put to death Wednesday morning at the Arizona State Prison Complex - Florence.
Wood 55, was sentenced to death for killing his girlfriend and her father in Tucson in 1989.
The Arizona Department of Corrections intends to execute him with a controversial drug called midazolam, which was used in three flawed executions earlier this year in which the dying inmates appeared to suffer respiratory distress. Arizona also frequently uses a controversial method of administering drugs that was at the center of a botched execution in April in Oklahoma, in which the condemned man writhed in pain for more than 40 minutes before dying of an apparent heart attack.
Wood's lawyers filed for a preliminary injunction to stop the execution unless the state provided them with information about the qualifications of the executioners and the origin of the drugs to be used in the execution. A U.S. District Court judge in Phoenix denied the request. However, on Saturday afternoon, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed that Wood had a First Amendment right to the information and imposed a conditional stay that could be vacated if the state turned over the information.