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News Scan

Alabama Set to Execute Man for Murder of Infant Son: Kelli Dugan of Reuters reports Christopher Thomas Johnson, 39, is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 6 p.m. local time at the Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore, Alabama for the 2005 murder of his 6-month-old son. Suffocation and head trauma were cited as the causes of death of Johnson's son, and the forensic pathologist who performed the autopsy testified at trial that the infant suffered at least 85 separate injuries. Johnson represented himself at trial and plead guilty. He was sentenced to death in February 2007. Johnson's stay on death row could possibly be one of the shortest on record in the U.S., says one law professor. Johnson will be the sixth inmate executed this year in Alabama, and the 38th nationwide.  See also prior post here.

Record Number of Illegal Immigrants Deported: The Associated Press reports
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said it deported almost 400,000 people, the largest number in the agency's history, in the fiscal year that ended in September. ICE Director John Morton said about 55% of those deported had misdemeanor or felony convictions. Of the 396,906 people deported, more than 1,000 were convicted of homicide; 5,800 were sexual offenders; and about 80,000 were convicted of drug related crimes or of driving under the influence.

Death Warrant Issued for Idaho Killer: Sven Berg of the Idaho Falls Post Register reports Bonneville County Judge Jon Shindurling issued a death warrant for Paul Ezra Rhoades in Idaho yesterday for murdering two women in 1987. Rhoades also received two life sentences for the second-degree murder of a convenience store clerk around the same time. Rhoades has filed a lawsuit against the state, saying that Idaho's method of lethal injection amounts to cruel and unusual punishment. The state has asked that the court throw out the lawsuit. Rhoades' execution is scheduled for November 18. It would be the first execution in Idaho since 1994, and the second since 1957. 

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