Executions Are About to Resume in OklahomaNewser — Arden Dier
Oklahoma is set to resume executions after a five-year lull prompted by drug mix-ups, but it won't be relying on nitrogen gas. As a 2015 law allowing the state to pursue execution by nitrogen hypoxia only permits the method if lethal injection drugs are unavailable, executions will be carried out using the sedative midazolam; vecuronium bromide, which stops breathing; and the heart-stopping drug potassium chloride, officials said Thursday.
They stressed that a "reliable" supplier had been found, per USA Today, though the source can't be revealed under state law. The last scheduled execution was called off in September 2015 after a drug supplier sent potassium acetate instead of potassium chloride.
The new steps, including verifying drugs at every step and more training for executioners, "add more checks and balances, more safeguards, to the system to ensure that what happened in the past won't happen again," Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter said.
Officials will continue to develop a plan to use nitrogen gas as an alternative, but "there are sufficient drugs to begin the process of scheduling executions," Hunter said, per USA Today, giving credit to Corrections Department Director Scott Crow for a "tireless search to acquire the drugs from a reliable source." Gov.
Kevin Stitt said executions would be "humane and swift." There are 47 people on death row in Oklahoma, including 26 who've exhausted their appeals.
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This article originally appeared on Newser: Executions Are About to Resume in Oklahoma