‘Full set of underwear’ required for execution witnesses, Alabama officials say


ATMORE, Alabama (WIAT) – Alabama prison officials remind members of the media to “wear a full set of underwear” if they plan to witness the execution of Alan Eugene Miller scheduled for later this month .

In a media advisory sent ahead of Miller’s scheduled execution by lethal injection, the Alabama Department of Corrections wrote that reporters would be required to adhere to a dress code outlined in the agency’s bylaws. The policy, which applies to visitors to the prison and has no specific guidelines for journalists or executions, includes a requirement that “the visitor(s) must wear a full set of underwear”.

Several sections of the policy attached to the ADOC media advisory have been highlighted in yellow by the agency, including the underwear regulations.

“All dresses, skirts and pants must fall below the knee (women only). Lunges/lunges must be knee-deep or lower (women only),” the highlighted section continued. “All blouses and shirts should be long enough to cover the waist and chest.”

The focus on ADOC’s dress code comes after corrections officials told a reporter that her skirt was too short to attend the execution of Joe Nathan James earlier this year. After donning a pair of waders provided by a colleague, she was allowed to witness the lethal injection.

The ADOC media advisory also reflects a change in policy regarding press access to cell phones while in transit to Holman Correctional Facility from a nearby press center.

“Media witnesses will be permitted to take their cell phones into the transport van, but must leave them inside the van before entering Holman CF,” the notice reads.

Before the execution of Joe Nathan James in July, members of the media sat in a prison van outside death row for hours without access to electronic devices or means of communication.

A independent autopsy of James was later shown to have been subjected to an outdated procedure called a “cutdown” where cuts are made to facilitate access to veins. James’ eyes weren’t open at the start of his execution and he appeared motionless except for his breathing, but corrections officials denied the man had been sedated.

On the night of James’ execution, Alabama Department of Corrections Commissioner John Hamm declined to provide an explanation for the hours-long delay.

Alan Eugene Miller, who is scheduled to be executed on September 22, was convicted of the shooting deaths of three men – Lee Michael Holdbrooks, Christopher Scott Yancy and Terry Lee Jarvis – in Shelby County in 1999.

You can read the entire Alabama Department of Corrections Bylaw below.

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