University of Michigan Law School
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Case Name Abdur'Rahman v. Bredesen CJ-TN-0002
Docket / Court 02-2236 (Davidson County) ( State Court )
State/Territory Tennessee
Case Type(s) Criminal Justice (Other)
Case Summary
On April 4, 2002, after many years of appeals following his criminal conviction, Abu-Ali Abdur'Rahman filed a petition in the Circuit Court for Davidson County, Tennessee, to reopen his post-petition case and raise several issues, including the constitutionality of the death penalty administered by ... read more >
On April 4, 2002, after many years of appeals following his criminal conviction, Abu-Ali Abdur'Rahman filed a petition in the Circuit Court for Davidson County, Tennessee, to reopen his post-petition case and raise several issues, including the constitutionality of the death penalty administered by lethal injection. The circuit court dismissed the petition with regard to all issues except the constitutionality of lethal injection. The state legislature enacted lethal injection as a means of execution in 1998 and appointed a committee to establish a protocol for its use. The plaintiff sought review of the constitutionality of that protocol. After a hearing, the trial court found for the state. The Court of Appeals of Tennessee affirmed.

The Tennessee Supreme Court (Chief Justice E. Riley Anderson) affirmed on October 17, 2005, finding that the protocol did not violate contemporary standards of decency and the plaintiff had not established that the procedures amounted to cruel and unusual punishment. Abdur'Rahman v. Bredesen, 181 S.W.3d 292 (Tenn. 2005). The United States Supreme Court denied certiorari on May 22, 2006. Abdur'Rahman v. Bredesen, 126 S.Ct. 2288 (2006).

Angela Heverling - 07/28/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Death Penalty
Lethal Injection - General
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. ยง 1983
Defendant(s) Tennessee Department of Corrections
Plaintiff Description A prisoner awaiting execution challenging the Tennessee Department of Correction's three-drug lethal injection protocol
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Defendant
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief None
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year 2006
Case Ongoing No
Docket(s)
No docket sheet currently in the collection
General Documents
Opinion 10/06/2004 (2004 WL 2246227)
CJ-TN-0002-0008 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Appellant's Supplemental Brief 03/30/2005
CJ-TN-0002-0006 PDF | Detail
Appellant's Brief 05/13/2005
CJ-TN-0002-0005 PDF | Detail
Tenn. Supreme Court Opinion 10/17/2005 (181 S.W.3d 292)
CJ-TN-0002-0007 PDF | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: Google Scholar
Supreme Court Petition for Writ of Certiorari 02/15/2006
CJ-TN-0002-0001 PDF | Detail
Amicus Brief filed on Behalf of Abdur'Rahman by Medical Professionals 04/19/2006
CJ-TN-0002-0002 PDF | Detail
Petitioner's Reply Brief 05/02/2006
CJ-TN-0002-0003 PDF | Detail
Petitioner's Supplemental Brief (in light of Clark execution in Ohio) 05/02/2006
CJ-TN-0002-0004 PDF | Detail
Judges Anderson, E. Riley (State Supreme Court)
CJ-TN-0002-0007
Cain, William B. (State Appellate Court)
CJ-TN-0002-0008
Clement, Frank G. Jr. (State Appellate Court)
CJ-TN-0002-0008
Koch, William C. (State Appellate Court)
CJ-TN-0002-0008
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Goldstein, Thomas C. (District of Columbia)
CJ-TN-0002-0001 | CJ-TN-0002-0003 | CJ-TN-0002-0004
Howe, Amy (District of Columbia)
CJ-TN-0002-0001 | CJ-TN-0002-0003 | CJ-TN-0002-0004
MacLean, Cynthia W. (Tennessee)
CJ-TN-0002-0005 | CJ-TN-0002-0006
MacLean, Bradley Alan (Tennessee)
CJ-TN-0002-0001 | CJ-TN-0002-0003 | CJ-TN-0002-0004 | CJ-TN-0002-0005 | CJ-TN-0002-0006
Redick, William P. Jr. (Tennessee)
CJ-TN-0002-0001 | CJ-TN-0002-0003 | CJ-TN-0002-0004 | CJ-TN-0002-0005 | CJ-TN-0002-0006
Russell, Kevin K. (District of Columbia)
CJ-TN-0002-0001 | CJ-TN-0002-0003 | CJ-TN-0002-0004
Defendant's Lawyers None on record
Other Lawyers Aronow, Geoffrey F. (District of Columbia)
CJ-TN-0002-0002
Koop, Lissa R. (District of Columbia)
CJ-TN-0002-0002
Kudon, Jeremy (District of Columbia)
CJ-TN-0002-0002

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