Appeals court rejects state request in Jeffrey Lundgren’s death penalty case

CINCINNATI – The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday denied the state’s request for a full-court hearing in the case of a death row inmate who’s scheduled execution on Tuesday for killing a family of five was put on hold last week.

The state has asked the appeals court to reverse U.S. District Court Judge Gregory Frost’s order that allowed the execution to be delayed so that Jeffrey Lundgren can join a lawsuit challenging Ohio’s use of lethal injection.

The appeals court referred the motion to a three-judge panel for consideration.

The 2004 lawsuit argues that the method used to administer a lethal injection is painful enough to amount to cruel and unusual punishment. Lundgren contends he is at even greater risk of experiencing pain and suffering because he is overweight and diabetic.

Lundgren, 56, was convicted of killing the family, including three children, in northeast Ohio in 1989 while they stood in a pit dug inside his barn in northeast Ohio.

Lundgren formed a cult after he was dismissed in 1987 as a lay minister of the Reorganized Church of Latter Day Saints, now known as the Community of Christ. He has said passages in the Bible told him to kill the family.

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AP, via The Beacon Journal, USA
Oct. 22, 2006

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