Stay on death penalty lifted
An Ocala judge who recently raised numerous concerns with the Department of Corrections' lethal injection protocols ruled Monday that there is no evidence Angel Diaz's death was "botched" and lifted a stay of execution for murderer Ian Deco Lightbourne.
Gov. Charlie Crist has not signed a death warrant for Lightbourne but the ruling is significant because another killer, Mark Dean Schwab, is facing execution in November. Both cases go before the Florida Supreme Court in October.
Circuit Judge Carven Angel told the Times Monday night that he felt the DOC addressed his concerns, but added they are "real, legitimate concerns and can't be ignored. The state and the department are going to have to be sensitive to them."
DOC Secretary Jim McDonough said, "I respect Judge Angel for the thorough review he has given to the matter of lethal injection in the state of Florida. I note the depth of consideration he has given to each of the issues raised and agree with his conclusion that we in the Department of Corrections are prepared to professionally carry out this solemn duty in a humane and dignified manner, as ordered by the courts."