WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — The Wednesday execution of a man convicted of murdering a Rider High graduate and her 7-year-old son is still on the schedule after a federal appeals court blocked a federal judge’s injunction.
Stephen Barbee, 55, has been on death row since February 2006 awaiting execution for the 2005 suffocation deaths of Rider graduate Lisa Underwood and her son Jayden in their Fort Worth home.
His execution is set for Wednesday, November 16, 2022. His attorneys were granted a preliminary injunction by a federal judge in Houston requiring conditions to be met before the execution could proceed.
But the state appealed to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals which a Texas Department of Criminal Justice spokesperson said ruled in favor of TDCJ in blocking the injunction.
The injunction stated the execution could proceed only if the state publishes a clear policy on an inmate’s religious rights in the execution chamber.
Barbee appealed over the denial of his request to have a spiritual adviser be in the chamber and lay hands on him.
The defense obtained the preliminary injunction on the grounds the TDCJ has not published its written policy to define what spiritual advisers may and may not do in the execution chamber.