Jun 24 2014
Over a 24 hour period last week, executioners in Georgia, Missouri and Florida killed three death row prisoners after a seven week lull following the botched execution of Clayton Lockett in Oklahoma in April. These states along with Texas are responsible for the vast majority of the two dozen or so executions committed this year.
During his execution, Lockett writhed on the table for 94 minutes and then died from a heart attack when his executioners ran out of a secret cocktail of lethal drugs. The gruesome event sparked a national debate about the constitutionality and morality of the US death penalty.
Increasingly pharmacists not only abroad but within the US have refused to provide states with the drugs intended to kill prisoners. Prison officials have resorted to secret deals and even used state health departments as fronts to facilitate transactions with wary drug suppliers.
The three states involved in this week’s executions refused to release information on where they obtained the drugs, and whether they had been tested beforehand. This cruelest form of punishment continues to be mediated through secret deals.
GUEST: Richard Dieter, Executive Director, Death Penalty Information Center
Visit www.deathpenaltyinfo.com for more information.