Singleton had voluntarily taken the drugs until last summer, and when he stopped, prison officials decided to forcibly medicate him. That puts the state of Arkansas in a very dicey box. "In the majority of similar cases across the country, courts do not allow insane people to be put to death," says TIME Austin bureau chief Sam Gwynne. "Nor have courts upheld the right of states to medicate prisoners so that they will be sane enough to execute."
On Monday, Singleton pleaded for his life at a circuit court hearing to determine whether Arkansas may carry out the death sentence. A circuit court ruling, expected by May 22, could prove that drugs can kill you, even if they're administered by the state.