April 24, 2014

Elyria
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Two area murder defendants join death penalty challenge

ELYRIA — Two more accused killers are challenging the constitutionality of the state’s lethal injection process, claiming it’s cruel and unusual.Mike Duff, attorney for Kevin Kimbrough and Jason Charles, filed the motions Friday, saying the death penalty could only be administered “quickly and painlessly.”

Courts — including the U.S. Supreme Court — have been reviewing complaints from death row inmates and critics of the death penalty that the lethal drug cocktail used by Ohio and other states in executions doesn’t guarantee a painless death.

County Common Please Judge James Burge has already agreed to hold hearings in the cases of two alleged killers — Ruben Rivera and Ronald McCloud — who are on his docket, a move being challenged in the Ohio Supreme Court by prosecutors.

Kimbrough is accused of killing an 8-month old baby in his care earlier this year, while Charles is accused of killing a man in a 2004 shooting.