On Monday evening, at 7:25 p.m., Jack Jones was executed by lethal injection in Arkansas’s Cummins Unit. And just a few hours later, a second inmate, Marcel Williams, was put to death as well. Arkansas can now claim the grim distinction of carrying out the first double execution in the U.S. since 2000.
According to the AP, U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker issued a stay of execution for Williams this evening, but after roughly an hour, lifted it. Thus, as of 9:22 on Monday evening, nothing prevented the state of Arkansas from killing two men in one night. And because Williams’s warrant expired at midnight, officials were motivated to act hastily.
Meanwhile, Arkansas’s district attorney is combatting claims that Jones suffered during his execution. Williams’s attorneys reported that 40 minutes were spent trying to insert the IV into Jones’s arm. Baker issued her stay for Williams upon learning this account, but ultimately, her actions indicated confidence that the second execution should proceed.
Arkansas initiated this gruesome execution marathon in order to use their supply of the drug Midazolam—one of the three drugs required for the state’s lethal injection procedure—before it expires. In so doing, they are treating human beings as if they possess expiration dates as well.