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States’ use of execution drugs varies widely

States’ use of execution drugs varies widely

Problematic executions in Arizona, Oklahoma and other states have highlighted a patchwork approach states are taking with lethal drugs, with types, combinations and dosages varying widely. A question-and-answer look at how the disparities in drugs came about and why, after more than three decades in which all death penalty states used the exact same mixture:

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It worked so well we’re not doing it again

A report commissioned by the Dept of Corrections on the execution of Joseph Wood found no fault in the agency’s two-drug protocol. Still, consultants who prepared the report, which was released today (Dec. 22), recommended that DOC ditch the protocol. Subsequently, DOC Director Charles Ryan has decided not to use the two-drug combination of midazolam and hydromorphone in executions.

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