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Arizona high court allows execution to proceed

By The Associated Press

This article was published July 23, 2014 at 1:48 p.m.

FLORENCE, Ariz. — Arizona's highest court is allowing the execution of a condemned inmate to proceed after considering a last-minute appeal that put his lethal injection on hold.

The appeal focused on arguments that Joseph Rudolph Wood received inadequate legal representation at his sentencing, along with a challenge about the secrecy of the lethal injection drugs.

The Arizona Supreme Court temporarily halted Wood's execution scheduled for Wednesday morning, but then rejected the appeal and said the execution could proceed.

Officials at the state prison in Florence have told witnesses to return to the execution chamber at 1 p.m.

The planned execution is occurring amid new scrutiny nationwide over lethal injections after several contentious executions.

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