Judge prolongs stay of execution given to inmate after Okla. ran out of lethal injection drug

A federal judge has declined to lift a stay of execution for an Oklahoma man whose lethal injection was put on hold because the state ran out of one of the drugs used in the procedure.

Prosecutors had asked U.S. District Judge Stephen Friot to lift the stay for Jeffrey David Matthews after the state acquired enough sodium thiopental to execute him. But The Oklahoman newspaper reported Wednesday that Friot has kept the stay in place until an Oct. 15 hearing, when he'll hear arguments from defense attorneys.

A nationwide shortage of the anesthetic led Oklahoma to alter its lethal injection procedures. Matthews' attorneys objected to the change, prompting Friot to delay Matthews' scheduled August execution.

Matthews was convicted of murdering his 77-year-old great uncle in 1994.


Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com