Missouri's incoming chief justice says it's unlikely any executions will be scheduled in the state while the courts assess an inmate's lawsuit challenging Missouri's lethal injection procedure.

Executions had been on hold in Missouri for four years until the state executed an inmate last month.

The 8th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals put a hold on the June 17 execution of Reginald Clemons after his attorneys challenged Missouri's lethal injection procedures. They want to ensure Missouri is using competent personnel who will not cause inmates pain with insufficient amounts of anesthesia before lethal injections.

Incoming Chief Justice William Ray Price Jr. said Tuesday that a federal decision in the case could apply to all Missouri inmates facing execution.