A mentally ill man has been executed in Florida by lethal injection.
A mentally ill man has been executed in the US state of Florida while the US Constitution prohibits executing such people.
On Monday, 65-year-old John Ferguson was executed by lethal injection after the US Supreme Court refused to hear a final petition from his lawyers.
According to the Eighth Amendment of the US Constitution, which bans Å“cruel and unusual punishment,” the execution of a mentally ill person is a constitutional violation, argued Fergusonâ„¢s legal team.
Ferguson had been diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic and a number of medical examinations had shown that he was grossly psychotic and insane.
Å“John Ferguson is without a doubt mentally ill. He has a 40-year history of paranoid schizophrenia, we have more than 30 doctors diagnosing him as that over four decades. Yet Florida is close to eviscerating the US supreme court law that makes him ineligible for execution,” Fergusonâ„¢s lawyer Ben Lewis told The Guardian prior to the execution.
Ferguson was guilty of killing two teenage school students in 1978 and being part of a group that murdered six people during an armed robbery in 1977.
He was under the delusion that he had powers drawn from the Sun and that he was the prince of God.
Ferguson was convinced that his execution was a plot by Florida officials to prevent him from wielding his sun-given powers.
The state Supreme Court of Florida argued that Fergusonâ„¢s belief in his own immortality was in line with a belief shared by millions of other American Christians and ruled that he was eligible for the execution.
In 1976, the US Supreme Court lifted a ban on the death penalty and over 1,300 people have been executed since then.
According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the racial ratio of the victims of the death penalty in the US has been striking since the revival of the practice in 1976, with the penalty being disproportionately imposed on ethnic minorities.
Republished from: Press TV