The court suspended the first execution from taking place in a US Federal prison in 17 years, according to an order from judge Jane Magnus-Stinson in Indiana.
Relatives of those who died at the hands of Daniel Lewis Lee filed a lawsuit to suspend the execution, because the administration of the prison in Indiana, according to them, did not create a safe environment for their presence. Relatives of the victims refer to the COVID-19 epidemic.
The judge suspended the execution until the authorities provide such conditions.
A year ago, Attorney General William Barr said that Federal authorities would resume executing criminals because they felt an obligation to comfort the victims ‘ families. However, relatives of the victims of Daniel Lewis Lee, who was due to die on Monday in the city of Terre Haute in Indiana, asked the court to suspend the execution. According to them, Lee’s performance will only add to their grief.
Lee, a member of a racist group, brutally murdered a family of three, including an 8-year-old girl. In 1999, a jury sentenced him to death.
Two more executions are scheduled for next week – Wesley Ira Parks, who raped and killed a 16-year-old girl, and Keith Duane Nelson, who kidnapped, raped, and killed a 10-year-old girl.
The reinstatement of the Federal death penalty is symbolic for the United States, where the vast majority of executions take place in the jurisdiction of individual States, not federal authorities.