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Legal battle centers on release of Alabama execution details

A federal appeals court is considering whether a lower court judge was wrong to rule that Alabama's execution protocol should be unsealed at the request of news outlets.

Posted: Nov. 5, 2018 1:55 PM

ATLANTA (AP) - A federal appeals court is considering whether a lower court judge was wrong to rule that Alabama's execution protocol should be unsealed at the request of news outlets.

The Associated Press and other outlets intervened in the case of Alabama death row inmate Doyle Hamm, filing a motion seeking the release of records including the state's execution protocol.

A federal judge ruled in May that the public has "a common law right of access" to the records, including a redacted version of the protocol.

The state appealed, arguing the judge was wrong to grant access to the execution protocol, in part because it hadn't been filed in the case.

A three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta on Monday heard arguments in the appeal.

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