Alabama calls off execution after problem with venous access

ATMORE, Ala. (AP) — Alabama has called off the scheduled execution of a man convicted in the 1988 murder-for-hire slaying of a preacher’s wife after the state had trouble establishing venous access and the state faced a midnight deadline to get the execution underway. Alabama Department of Corrections Commissioner John Hamm says prison staff tried for about an hour to get the two required intravenous lines connected to Kenneth Eugene Smith. Hamm said they got one established but were not able to get the second after trying several locations on Smith’s body. It is the second execution since September that the state has cancelled because of venous access difficulties.