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Can the death row inmate be executed if he can’t remember committing the murder?

Argument October 2, 2018

Vernon Madison was sentenced to death for shooting and killing a police officer from close range. The murder was over 30 years ago.

During Madison’s time on death row, he has suffered several strokes and has now been diagnosed with Vascular Dementia and Cognitive Impairment. He has presented testimony from a psychologist saying Madison can’t remember killing the police officer, nor “the sequence of events from the offense to his arrest to the trial or any of those details.”

Can the state still execute him?

The Justices will consider the boundaries of the Eighth Amendment's prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.


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Check out our Gill v. Whitford graphic on NPR!

See Nina Totenberg of NPR's This Supreme Court Case Could Radically Reshape Politics (Oct. 3, 2017)!

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