The Arizona Supreme Court on Tuesday set deadlines for the state attorney general to file his motions for warrants of execution for two death row inmates.
Arizona is readying to resume executions after nearly seven years, although the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry did not provide reassurances that the medical team or the drugs used would avoid issues that surfaced through litigation leading up to and during the hiatus.
Now that the federal government plans to resume capital punishment, Arizona should as well, according to Attorney General Mark Brnovich.
June marked the end of a three-year long legal battle to tighten up Arizona’s execution laws, but even after the state reached an agreement, the fate of those on death row is still uncertain.
Arizona Department of Corrections Director Charles Ryan announced today the state will stop executing prisoners with the drug combination used on Joseph Wood, who took two hours to die in July.
Six death row inmates, including one scheduled to die July 23, sued the state today in federal court, alleging the secrecy surrounding the lethal drugs to be used in executions violates their First Amendment rights.
The Arizona Supreme Court on May 28 set the date for the state’s next execution even as a federal judge in Ohio delayed executions there on the previous day to hash out the constitutionality of a two-drug combination both states use for lethal injections.
The Arizona Department of Corrections is going to resume executions by using a secret pharmacy to mix a drug combination that left an Ohio prisoner choking and snorting for 19 minutes as he died in January.