Oklahoma Can't Find Lethal Injection Drugs
Pair of executions delayed after failed 'Herculean' effort
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Mar 19, 2014 2:41 AM CDT
This June 29, 2011 photo provided by the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, shows Charles Warner.    (AP Photo/Oklahoma Department of Corrections, File)

(Newser) – Two executions in Oklahoma have been pushed back a month as the state scrambles to find a source of lethal-injection drugs. The two inmates had filed a lawsuit seeking more information about the drugs that would be used to kill them, but the state's Court of Criminal Appeals decided the request was moot because the state didn't have the drugs on hand anyway, reports the AP. Death Row inmates Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner argued that they feared the execution drugs might be contaminated.

In briefs filed earlier this week, the state attorney general's office said it had been unable to secure a supply of the sedative pentobarbital and the muscle relaxant vecuronium bromide despite "Herculean" efforts, NBC reports. Lockett, who murdered a 19-year-old woman in 1999 and Warner, who raped and murdered his girlfriend's 11-month-old daughter in 1997, are now scheduled to be executed in late April. The state's attorney general described the delay as the result of "outside forces employing threats, intimidation, and coercion to keep the state of Oklahoma from imposing the punishment handed down for these heinous crimes." Other states facing execution drug shortages are looking into bringing back firing squads or gas chambers.

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Showing 3 of 141 comments
Mar 21, 2014 6:26 AM CDT
How in the hell does someone rape and murder an 11-month old child? It's impossible to scrape up too much concern for what happens to someone who does something that despicable and inhuman.
Mar 20, 2014 10:24 PM CDT
Delay? What they quit selling rope?
Barb K
Mar 20, 2014 10:01 AM CDT
Put them to death by the same "humane" methods they used to do their victims. And do it in the same amount of time it was estimated to take for them to die.