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US inmate chooses electric chair over lethal injection

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An inmate in the US state of Tennessee has been executed by electric chair after arguing that a lethal injection would involve suffering.

David Earl Miller, who spent 36 years on death row, was the latest of an increasing number of inmates attempting to avoid lethal injection following several botched executions.

Another Tennessee inmate, Edmund Zagorski, was electrocuted last month.

Lethal injection is the state’s main method of execution.

However, inmates in the state whose crimes were committed before 1999 are allowed to choose electrocution instead.

Prior to Zagorski’s execution, the electric chair had not been used since 2013.

Miller was pronounced dead at 19:25 local time on Thursday (01:25 GMT Friday) at the Riverbend Maximum Security Institution in Nashville.

Tennessee department of correction spokesman Tylee Tracer said that Miller’s last words were: “Beats being on death row.”

Miller was found guilty of killing a 23-year-old mentally ill woman in 1981.

In court, both Miller and Zagorski had cited the August execution of Billy Ray Irick, who turned purple and took 20 minutes to die, AP reported.

Zagorski’s execution was the second time the state’s electric chair had been used since 1960.

It follows a series of executions using a variety of drug combinations where prisoners have appeared to suffer. The US constitution bans cruel and unusual punishments.

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