Lincoln, Neb. (AP) Nebraska's governor is now considering his options, after the state's highest court found electrocution to be a cruel and unusual method of executing condemned prisoners.
Nebraska is the only state that has the electric chair as the only means of execution.
A spokeswoman says the governor is considering introducing a bill in the current legislative session that would replace electrocution with lethal injection.
In a statement, Governor Dave Heineman says he's “appalled” by the Nebraska Supreme Court decision. He says it's an “activist court” that is continuing an “assault on the Nebraska death penalty.”
But the court left the death penalty on the books. It said the legislature must approve another method to use it. The court found that evidence showed that electrocution inflicts “intense pain and agonizing suffering.”
The ruling upheld the death sentence in the case of Raymond Mata, convicted in the killing and dismemberment of a 3-year-old boy.