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Death Row Inmate Will Be Executed In Firing Squad Chair

Death Row Inmate Will Be Executed In Firing Squad Chair

Richard Bernard Moore, 57, only chose the firing squad because he was required to make a choice

The eerie first picture of a firing squad chair that a death row inmate could be executed in has been released.

South Carolina death row inmate Richard Bernard Moore reluctantly chose to die by firing squad after he killed a store clerk in 1999.

Moore, 57, was given two choices: death by electrocution; or death by firing squad.

He only chose to be shot by firing squad because he was more strongly opposed to death by electrocution, reports Daily Mail.

The frightening image below shows the death chamber in Columbia, South Carolina, including the electric chair (right) and the firing squad chair (left) that could be used to kill Moore.


The inmate revealed in a written statement that he didn't agree with either method.

He wrote: "I, Richard Bernard Moore, am challenging the legality and constitutionality of the firing squad and electric chair in an ongoing action in the Richland County Court of Common Pleas.

"Ovens, et al. v. Stirling, et al., No. 2021-CP-40-02306. By operation of the state's method-of-execution statute, which is also challenged in that action, the Department of Corrections is today forcing me to elect my method of execution.

"The Department is presenting only the firing squad and electrocution as the available methods from which I can choose. If I decline to make a choice, the Department intends to execute me by electrocution.

"I do not believe or concede that either the firing squad or electrocution is legal or constitutional."


According to the Washington-based nonprofit Death Penalty Information Center, South Carolina is one of the eight states that still use the two methods, while others include Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Tennessee.

Moore added: "I do not believe the Department should be allowed to certify that a statutorily prescribed method, such as lethal injection, is unavailable without demonstrating a good faith effort to make it available.

"However, I more strongly oppose death by electrocution.


"Because the Department says I must choose between firing squad or electrocution or be executed by electrocution I will elect firing squad.

"I believe this election is forcing me to choose between two unconstitutional methods of execution, and I do not intend to waive any challenges to electrocution or firing squad by making an election."

In 1999, Moore was convicted of killing convenience store clerk James Mahoney in Spartanburg and has spent more than 20 years on death row.

His planned execution is on April 29, and if it goes through, he will be the first person in 11 years to be put to death in the state and the fourth in the country to die by firing squad in nearly 50 years.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy/South Carolina Department of Corrections

Topics: US News, Crime