Mon, 29 May 2023

Idaho to return to death by firing squad for some inmates

Robert Besser
23 Mar 2023, 01:52 GMT+10

BOISE, Idaho: Under a bill passed by the Idaho Legislature thios with a veto-proof majority, the state will allow firing squads to execute death row inmates if lethal-injection drugs are unavailable.

The scheduled execution of one death row inmate has already been postponed multiple times due to the scarcity of required drugs.

The delays have been caused by difficulties in obtaining the chemicals required to conduct lethal injection programs, as drug companies have prevented their products from being used, Idaho and other states have recently attempted to revive older methods of execution.

Idaho Republican Gov. Brad Little has expressed his support for the death penalty, but generally does not comment on legislation.

According to the Death Penalty Information Center, Mississippi, Utah, Oklahoma and South Carolina are currently the only states that allow firing squads, if other execution methods are unavailable, and South Carolina's law is on hold pending the outcome of a legal challenge.

During a historic round of 13 executions in the final months of Donald Trump's presidency, the federal government issued a protocol allowing firing squads for federal executions if necessary, but was never used.

While the Justice Department reviewed relevant protocols, US attorney-general Merrick Garland ordered a temporary pause on federal executions in 2021, but did not confirm the moratorium's end date.

During his campaign, Biden pledged to end the death penalty in the US, but he has remained silent on the issue as president.

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