Tennessee high court says Hooker has to go through regular appeals

John Jay Hooker
John Jay Hooker (Photo: WKRN)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – The Tennessee Supreme Court has denied a request from a terminally ill former Democratic gubernatorial nominee who wanted to take his right-to-die case directly to justices.

John Jay Hooker wants Tennessee to allow physicians to prescribe lethal doses of painkillers to their mentally competent dying patients.

A trial court judge ruled against him and said Tennessee’s statute making assisted suicide illegal does not violate the constitutional rights either of Hooker or the three physicians who are also plaintiffs in the lawsuit.

In response, Hooker’s attorneys asked the state Supreme Court to skip the normal appeals process and take up the case immediately since the 85-year-old Hooker is dying.

The state high court declined, saying Hooker has to go through the normal appeals process.

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