Georgia will not be able to execute Warren Hill on Monday. He has been granted a temporary stay so the state of Georgia can sort out whether the sudden switch to a one-drug lethal injection protocol last week violated state laws guaranteeing public input on important administrative procedures (like killing people).
This is good news, in that Hill will not immediately be put to death, but there is no question that Georgia fully intends to execute a man with an IQ of 70 whom state judges have declared to be “mentally retarded” by all legal standards except the “beyond a reasonable doubt” bar used only by Georgia.
That the stay was granted on the lethal injection question allows the state of Georgia to evade further scrutiny of the way it handles capital punishment for the mentally disabled. For now, the Supreme Court, which banned executions of those with intellectual disabilities ten years ago, will not be reviewing Warren Hill’s case or the unique Georgia law upon which the state bases its right to kill him.