The rapid pacing of the planned executions prompted a flurry of legal challenges and renewed a debate over executions in the United States, with lawyers for the inmates arguing that Arkansas was in an unseemly rush that offended standards of decency.
Courts have halted four of those executions as arguments continue over death-penalty protocols, but the Supreme Court denied the petitions for the group. One of them was a 5-4 decision in which new Justice Neil Gorsuch sided with the four other conservative justices in denying the motion, while the court's liberals dissented.
In a dissenting opinion, Justice Stephen Breyer said he took issue with the state trying to use the drugs before their expiration date.
"In my view, that factor, when considered as a determining factor separating those who live from those who die, is close to random," he wrote.Read more at Reuters