The U.S. Supreme Court has issued a temporary stay on the execution of an Alabama prison inmate.
The nation's high court stayed the execution of Tommy Arthur, "pending further order" from the justices, late Thursday afternoon. Arthur was scheduled to be executed Thursday evening.
Arthur's attorneys filed two last-minute appeals to the court. One challenges the use of a drug in the state's lethal injection protocol and the other called for a telephone in the death chamber so lawyers can call the court if something goes wrong. The 75-year-old Arthur is on his eighth execution date. He was convicted in the 1982 murder-for-hire slaying of Troy Wicker.