State of Arkansas asks court to remove Judge Griffen from restraining order case

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The State of Arkansas has filed an emergency petition asking for the Arkansas Supreme Court to remove Judge Wendell Griffen from a temporary restraining order case which effectively halts the scheduled executions.

On Friday, McKesson Medical-Surgical Incorporated filed a temporary restraining order in which the pharmaceutical company said the Arkansas Department of Correction "misled McKesson when it procured the vecuronium."

In the emergency petition, the states claimed that McKesson's complaint alleges that the company itself "made a mistake nine months ago" when it sold the vercuronium bromide to the ADC.

The states also asks the court to remove Griffen from the case because they argue that Griffen can't be "considered remotely impartial" on the death penalty due to his actions on Friday. Griffen joined a group of protesters outside of the Governor's Mansion where he simulated an inmate being executed by lying down on a cot.

The state also cites Griffen's personal blog where he states, "[The state] plan to use medication designed for treating and healing disease to kill men."

In response, the Arkansas Supreme Court has reassigned all cases relating to the death penalty or the state's execution protocol.

The court also referred Griffen to the Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission to consider whether or not he violated the Code of Judicial Conduct. The commission is aware of the referral and confirmed they are beginning to investigate the matter.

As of now, both the temporary restraining order and Judge Kristine Baker's latest ruling are blocking the state's scheduled executions.

© 2017 KTHV-TV


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