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Porn publisher Flynt seeks to save man who shot him from execution

Nov. 12, 2013 at 11:49 AM   |   Comments

KANSAS CITY, Mo., Nov. 12 (UPI) -- Pornography publisher Larry Flynt says the man whose bullet left him disabled shouldn't be put to death, but spend the rest of his life in a Missouri prison.

Flynt is challenging the death sentence for Joseph Paul Franklin, raising questions about the procedure that will be used to execute him, The Kansas City Star reported Monday.

Franklin, 63, is scheduled to die by lethal injection Nov. 20 for a killing outside a St. Louis-area synagogue in 1977. While Franklin has confessed to firing the shot that paralyzed Flynt and left him in a wheelchair, he has not been tried for the crime.

Flynt, 71, said he would prefer Franklin spend the rest of his life in a cell, a punishment he said would be "far harsher than the quick release of a lethal injection."

Flynt is trying to join a lawsuit filed by Franklin and other death row inmates that wants to make the protocol for executions more transparent.

In a statement released Monday by the American Civil Liberties Union, Flynt said, "the public has a right to know the details about how the state plans to execute people on its behalf."

The suit seeks to reveal the name of the compounding pharmacy that will make the pentobarbital used in the injection. Lawyers for the inmates allege many compounding pharmacies don't face the same level of federal scrutiny as traditional pharmacies and without knowing the identity of the pharmacy there is no way to know if the drug is properly made and will work. Impure or weak drugs, the attorneys say, could constitute cruel or unusual punishment.

Flynt wants to unseal documents that would, in part, reveal the name of the anesthesiologist who is part of the execution team.

He said he also plans to ask Gov. Jay Nixon to commute Franklin's death sentence.

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