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4th Tennessee death row inmate selects electric chair

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee death row inmate on Thursday selected electrocution for his upcoming execution, a move that would make him the fourth person...
Lee Hall

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee death row inmate onThursday selected electrocution for his upcoming execution, a move that wouldmake him the fourth person in the state to choose that method over lethalinjection since last year.

A spokeswoman with the Department of Correction confirmedthat Lee Hall, formerly known as Leroy Hall Jr., requested the electric chairfor his scheduled Dec. 5 execution.

In Tennessee, the state’s primary execution method is lethalinjection but inmates can choose electrocution if they were convicted of crimesbefore January 1999.

Nationally, electrocution is a rarely-used option —partially due to it being legal in only six states. However, it’s a method thathas been requested by three out of the five past death row inmates sinceTennessee started resuming executions in August 2018.

Outside of Tennessee, the last time the electric chair wasused in an execution was in 2013 in Virginia. Courts in Georgia and Nebraskahave declared the electric chair unconstitutional and the U.S. Supreme Courthas never fully considered its constitutionality.

Hall was convicted of killing Traci Crozier in 1991 inChattanooga. He set her car on fire while she was still inside. According tocourt documents, Crozier received burns to more than 90% of her body and diedseveral hours later in the hospital.

Hall’s attorneys are currently fighting to block theexecution date.

Tennessee performed three executions last year. It wassecond only to Texas, which carried out 13.

Most states have been moving away from the death penalty,but Tennessee’s attorney general has requested to schedule executions for ninedeath-row prisoners and restore a 10th inmate’s death sentence. Anotherexecution has been scheduled for 2020.

Most recently, Tennessee put 56-year-old Stephen West todeath by electric chair in August. West was convicted of the 1986 kidnappingsand stabbing deaths of a mother and her 15-year-old daughter. He also wasconvicted of raping the teen.