NEWS ABOUT: lethal injection

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In Arizona, State Makes Up Execution Rules as It Goes

Times investigation shows history of botched, improvised executions

(Newser) - The botched execution of Joseph Wood last month in Arizona showed that the state Corrections Department was "making it up as it went along,” says Wood's public defender. Now a New York Times investigation suggests the incident may be part of a greater pattern. Wood's lawyer... More »

How a Hospital Made an Execution Possible

It didn't realize drug was for lethal injection: board member

(Newser) - A Louisiana hospital facilitated an execution—without realizing it was doing so, says a new report citing a board member who's also an appeals court judge. Short on execution drugs, the state opted to use a combination of hydromorphone and midazolam for a lethal injection, the Lens explains. Louisiana... More »

Missouri Executes Inmate for 1995 Murder

Execution is first since botched Arizona lethal injection

(Newser) - A Missouri inmate was put to death just after midnight for raping and killing a college student in 1995, making him the first US prisoner put to death since an Arizona lethal injection went awry last month . The Missouri Department of Corrections says Michael Worthington was executed by lethal injection... More »

First 14 Doses Failed to Kill Death Row Inmate

Arizona's Joseph Wood died after the 15th, nearly 2 hours later

(Newser) - Now we know why the execution of Joseph Wood in Arizona took so long : It took 15 doses of drugs to get the job done, reports the LA Times . State prison officials laid out the details yesterday, explaining that Wood got a combination of hydromorphone and midazolam at 1:52pm... More »

John McCain: Botched Execution Was Torture

He says 'bollocks-upped' situation is unacceptable

(Newser) - John McCain, who learned a thing or two about torture during his years as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam, says the botched execution of an Arizona inmate was torture and that the people involved need to be held responsible. "I believe in the death penalty for certain... More »

Lawyers Tried to Stop Botched Execution After 1 Hour

Justice Kennedy turned down request

(Newser) - "He has been gasping for more than an hour," lawyers said in an emergency appeal to halt the botched execution of Arizona inmate Joseph Rudolph Wood yesterday. "He is still alive." As the hour mark passed, Wood's lawyers filed an appeal to a district court... More »

Inmate Takes 2 Hours to Die in Arizona Execution

Lawyers for Joseph Wood tried to stop procedure after an hour

(Newser) - Another botched execution? Arizona executed a murderer today, but it took Joseph Rudolph Wood nearly two hours to die, reports the Arizona Republic . It took so long that Wood's lawyers filed an emergency appeal to stop the procedure after an hour because they say their 55-year-old client was still... More »

Supreme Court OKs Drug Secrecy in Ariz. Execution

Joseph Wood's 1st Amendment case turned down

(Newser) - The Supreme Court has cleared the way for Arizona to execute an inmate whose lawyers argued that he had a right to know more about how he was to be killed. The court sided with the state against Joseph Rudolph Wood, who could be executed as soon as this morning,... More »

Federal Judge: Use Firing Squads, Not Lethal Injections

Don't pretend killing isn't brutal, Kozinski says

(Newser) - Killing people is a brutal and messy business, and if Americans can't deal with that, they shouldn't be condemning people to death, a top federal judge says. In a strongly worded dissent in an Arizona lethal-injection case, Alex Kozinski, chief judge of the Ninth US Circuit Court of... More »

In 1st Since Botched Death, 3 Inmates Set for Execution

Inmates in Florida, Georgia, Missouri slated to die in next day

(Newser) - Nine executions nationwide have been stayed in the seven weeks since Clayton Lockett died in a botched lethal injection in Oklahoma, but three convicted killers are scheduled to die in the next day or so. All three states planning lethal injections—Florida, Georgia, and Missouri—refuse to say where they... More »

Okla. Returns Executed Inmate's Body—Minus Heart

Okla. says cause of death to be released 'very soon'

(Newser) - An Oklahoma inmate who died after a botched execution was returned to his family and cremated without his heart and larynx, which the office conducting an independent autopsy has decided to keep. Officials say medical examiners can retain tissue indefinitely. "It's not completely unusual," the medical director... More »

Tennessee Brings Back Electric Chair

As Wyoming debates return to firing squad

(Newser) - Amid shortages of drugs used in lethal injections and controversy over a botched execution in Oklahoma , Tennessee has become the first state to revive an older method of execution. Gov. Bill Haslam yesterday signed a bill allowing the state to use the electric chair if execution drugs are not available,... More »

Utah Lawmaker Calls for Firing Squad Executions

Rep. Paul Ray: 'It's probably the most humane' method

(Newser) - Rep. Paul Ray isn't the first lawmaker this year to call for a return to execution by firing squad—but he may be the first to get his way, the AP reports. After all, his state of Utah used a firing squad only four years ago. Officials had banned... More »

Okla. Stays Next Execution After Inmate's Botched Death

Charles Warner gets 6-month reprieve

(Newser) - Oklahoma's attorney general has agreed to a six-month stay of execution for a death row inmate scheduled to die next week while an investigation is conducted into last week's botched lethal injection. In a filing today with the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals, Attorney General Scott Pruitt's... More »

Ohio's Solution to Drawn-Out Execution: Bigger Dose

Inmate didn't suffer during long execution, state decides

(Newser) - The unusually long execution of Ohio inmate Dennis McGuire with a previously untested combo of drugs did not cause him "any pain or distress," state authorities have decided—but they plan to up the dosage in the future to be sure. McGuire, who raped and murdered a pregnant... More »

Now Oklahoma Ready to Execute 2

Court decides inmates don't need to know drug source

(Newser) - In yet another turnaround for Oklahoma murderers Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner, the state Supreme Court has lifted its own stay of execution , clearing the way for the two men to die by lethal injection next week. The court decided that the two inmates are not entitled to know the... More »

Okla. Courts Halt Executions in Fight Over Drug Secrecy

State courts squabble over jurisdiction

(Newser) - The execution of two murderers in Oklahoma has been delayed once again amid legal battles over drug secrecy. A judge ruled last month that it would be unconstitutional for the state to conceal the source of the drugs it plans to use to execute Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner, but... More »

Tenn. Senate Votes to Bring Back Electric Chair

Meanwhile, Ohio considers sweeping new restrictions

(Newser) - What do you do when you can't get your hands on the drugs in your lethal injection cocktail? As far as Tennessee's Senate is concerned, you fire up Old Sparky. The state's Senate yesterday voted 23-3 to advance a bill allowing the state to execute inmates via... More »

Texas Executes Killer Who Escaped Mexican Prison

He killed again after fleeing across border

(Newser) - A man who escaped the prison in Mexico where he was serving a murder sentence and killed again in the US has become the second Mexican citizen executed in Texas this year. Ramiro Hernandez, 44, was executed by lethal injection for beating a university professor to death in 1997 and... More »

Oklahoma: Warden Can Pick Any of 5 Lethal Injections

Inmates' lawyers raise concerns over chemical combinations

(Newser) - After a pair of executions were delayed over a dearth of fatal drugs, Oklahoma is saying that as of Friday, it has a new execution protocol—and its warden can now pick from any of five options for its lethal injections. Lawyers for death-row inmates Charles Warner and Clayton Lockett... More »

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