Death by firing squad is making a comeback in South Carolina. The Greenville News reported as much in an article a few weeks ago, saying that.
“The South Carolina Department of Corrections spent about $53,600 to establish a firing squad and renovate its execution facility, according to Department of Corrections spokesperson Chrysti Shain. That includes a number of rifles — exactly how many was redacted in a response to a records request by The Greenville News — and it includes renovations to the capital-punishment facility, stainless steel sheeting, ammunition, and ballistic partitions, according to invoices obtained through the Freedom of Information Act.”
Well, now the first inmate who could choose that option to die by firing squad rather than electric chair has been sentenced to death. The South Carolina Department of Corrections announced that in a statement, saying:
The S.C. Department of Corrections received an order of execution for Death Row
inmate Richard Bernard Moore today.
The order is being served on inmate Moore this evening.
Moore’s execution date will be April 29, which is set by law for four Fridays from the date the
department receives the order.
By law, Moore will be asked to choose his method of execution 14 days before execution day. Methods available are the electric chair and firing squad.
In May 2021, the S.C. General Assembly amended the state’s execution laws to create a firing squad as an option for condemned inmates. Pending executions were stayed by the S.C. Supreme Court while the department wrote protocols to govern a firing squad and renovated the Capital Punishment Facility. The department notified state officials last month that the process was complete.
Moore was sentenced to death by South Carolina’s courts after he was convicted of murder, assault with intent to kill, armed robbery, and a firearms violation. He committed those crimes when robbing a store in hope of securing money for his cocaine addiction. He was shot in the arm and show a man by the name of Mahoney in the chest, killing him. Moore’s appeals have been denied and he is now scheduled for execution.
The execution, when it takes place, will be the state of South Carolina’s first execution of a death row inmate in a decade; the hiatus happened because of a shortage of the drugs needed for lethal injection, a shortage which sparked the return to using firing squads for execution. Only three executions by firing squad have taken place in the US since 1976, all in Utah.
So, if Moore chooses death by firing squad, he’d be the first in the US in many years to die in that manner, potentially sparking a return to using firing squads and thus increasing the ability of the states to execute prisoners, something that has been made difficult by the lack of drugs necessary for lethal injection.
Breitbart, reporting on the situation, adds that “There are 35 men on death row in the state and the last execution occurred in 2011, when Jeffrey Motts chose the death chamber instead of moving forward with the appeals process, according to the AP. He was convicted of strangling his cellmate to death while serving a life sentence for murder.”
This story syndicated with permission from Will, Author at Trending Politics
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