Grady is Ground Zero for Arkansas Executions

GRADY, Ark. - On a country road surrounded by fields is a prison stirring up conversation and bringing national media to Murrell Kennedy's backyard.

Kennedy's farmhouse has been home for five decades. His neighbors are prisoners and the prison that's ground zero for executions in Arkansas.

"You put that out of your mind and you don't even think about it after it happens," says Kennedy.

He says Correction Officers have been getting ready as the state plans to kill six condemned prisoners over the next 11 days.

"They're locking everything they got down through here that can be locked up," says Kennedy.

In a town with a little more than 500 people, Timothy Pickens says most of the town's talk is about victim's families not so much about the men scheduled to die this month.

"It's not really a big deal to the community. I mean, the government's going to do what the government wants to do," says Pickens.

With less than 24 hours until the first scheduled execution, Kennedy recalls what it was like during the last lethal injection 12 years ago.

"You'd have state policeman at each one of these entrance ways to somewhere else and you'd have them up where they stop them [cars] on the highway," says Kennedy.

Kennedy says prison officials told him to prepare for people to show up at the Cummins Unit. He says state employees told him to block his driveway which would give people access to the prison's property.


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