clear
Friday November 17th, 2017 11:34PM
9:48PM ( 1 hour ago ) Weather Alert

APNewsBreak: Records show Ohio has plenty of execution drugs

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio has been able to replenish part of its lethal drug supply in recent months, and could carry out nearly 20 additional executions under certain conditions, according to new records obtained by The Associated Press.

The Department of Rehabilitation and Correction took in new supplies of midazolam, a sedative administered first to condemned inmates, and potassium chloride, which stops prisoners' hearts, in December and January, several weeks after receiving previous supplies of the drugs, the records show.

The records don't indicate whether the department received fresh supplies of the second drug in Ohio's method called rocuronium bromide, which paralyzes inmates.

But even relying on previous supplies, Ohio still has enough drugs for 18 more executions, according to drug logs which the AP obtained exclusively through an open records request.

Over the past decade, execution drug supplies nationally have dried up as manufacturers, under pressure from death penalty opponents, started putting them off limits for capital punishment. The shortage of drugs stopped executions in the state between January 2014 and July.

Getting any information about Ohio's execution drug supply has become increasingly difficult in recent years, thanks to a secrecy law that shields almost all details about the drugs, including their source and their expiration date. Death penalty supporters said the law — similar to laws in other states — was necessary to protect drugmakers from threats of violence if their role in capital punishment was made public.

Through records requests, the AP has twice been able to document the amounts Ohio receives, though not the source of the drugs.

The number of upcoming executions is not guaranteed. Court rulings and clemency decisions could spare some inmates.

Drug supplies also expire, which could also decrease the actual number of executions Ohio could undertake. The secrecy law shields such information, though a recent court filing indicated the drugs hadn't expired as of July 26, when Ohio executed child killer Ronald Phillips.

In addition, if Ohio had to use extra amounts of drugs during an execution — should the first dose of the sedative not work, for example — that could also reduce the amount available for future procedures.

After executing Dennis McGuire in January 2014, Ohio — like many states — looked unsuccessfully for years for a new source of lethal drugs.

The state won't say where it obtains its drugs. Attorneys for Ohio have said in court filings the drugs are from federally regulated manufacturers and are not being compounded in specialty doses, as in some states.

Ohio announced a year ago it had obtained new supplies of drugs. After courts cleared the way to use them, Ohio put Phillips to death in July and executed Gary Otte in September for killing two people in Parma, in suburban Cleveland, in robberies over two days.

JoEllen Smith, an Ohio prisons department spokeswoman, declined comment.

Several drugmakers wrote Ohio prisons director Gary Mohr in July, shortly before the Phillips execution, demanding information about the state's source for its drugs.

"Mylan takes seriously the possibility that one of its products may have been diverted for a use that is inconsistent with its approved labeling," Brian Roman, the company's General Counsel, wrote to Mohr on July 14, requesting a prompt reply. The AP obtained the letter through a records request.

Canonsburg, Pennsylvania-based Mylan makes rocuronium bromide. The state never responded, Mylan spokeswoman Julie Knell said.

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania-based B. Braun Medical Inc.; New York City-based Pfizer; Princeton, New Jersey-based Sandoz Inc.; and Eatontown, New Jersey-based, West-Ward Pharmaceuticals, sent similar letters.

The next execution is scheduled for Nov. 15 for Alva Campbell, sentenced to die for killing 18-year-old Charles Dials during a 1997 carjacking in central Ohio.

Attorneys for Campbell argue midazolam still raises an unconstitutional risk of serious pain because it may not render inmates so deeply unconscious that they don't feel the second two drugs.

___

Andrew Welsh-Huggins can be reached on Twitter at https://twitter.com/awhcolumbus.

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, AP Business, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Health Care
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Cleaning up 'Methadone Mile' and other drug havens
U.S. cities are wrestling with chronically drug-infested areas that have only worsened as cheaper heroin and more potent opioids have flooded in
11:32AM ( 1 minute ago )
APNewsBreak: Records show Ohio has plenty of execution drugs
New records show Ohio could have enough drugs on hand to carry out nearly 20 additional executions
11:30AM ( 3 minutes ago )
Spain's top court halts Catalan secession parliament meeting
Spain's Constitutional Court has ordered a suspension of Catalonia's planned parliamentary session next week during which the region has said it might declare independence and further fuel Spain's worst crisis in decades
11:27AM ( 6 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
The Latest: Ishiguro hopes his themes help our times
British novelist Kazuo Ishiguro says he hopes that he is contributing to helping solve some of the big problems of our times
10:44AM ( 50 minutes ago )
House GOP eyes budget passage that is key to tax debate
Republicans are focused on cutting taxes instead of deficits as they look to power a $4.1 trillion budget plan through the House on Thursday
10:33AM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: Ishiguro thought Nobel Prize was 'fake news'
Nobel literature laureate Kazuo Ishiguro first suspected he was the victim of "fake news" when he was told by his agent that he had been awarded the prize
10:28AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
Some in GOP open to banning gun accessory used in Vegas
Senior Republicans on Capitol Hill are expressing openness to the idea of a ban on "bump stocks" like the shooter in Las Vegas apparently used to make semi-automatic rifles perform more like fully automatic weapons
8:01AM ( 3 hours ago )
Clues few and elusive for motive of Las Vegas gunman
Those seeking to know the motive of Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock have had little more to chase than hints and shadows
7:28AM ( 4 hours ago )
Vegas shooter's gambling draws new attention to video poker
Authorities trying to piece together the final days before Stephen Paddock unleashed his arsenal of powerful firearms on country music fans on the Las Vegas Strip have at least one potential trove of information: his gambling habits
7:27AM ( 4 hours ago )
Top U.S. News short headlines
Spain's top court halts Catalan secession parliament meeting
Spain's Constitutional Court has ordered a suspension of Catalonia's planned parliamentary session next week during which the region has said it might declare independence and further fuel Spain's worst crisis in decades
11:27AM ( 6 minutes ago )
Did Las Vegas gunman target other music festivals?
Authorities say that in the days and months before he mowed down concertgoers from his high-rise hotel suite, Stephen Paddock rented rooms overlooking two other music festivals in Las Vegas and Chicago
11:18AM ( 15 minutes ago )
Brantley on Indians' ALDS roster after latest comeback
Indians All-Star outfielder Michael Brantley has made the AL Division Series roster after missing 50 games with a serious ankle injury
11:11AM ( 23 minutes ago )
British novelist Ishiguro wins Nobel Literature Prize
Kazuo Ishiguro, the Japanese-born British novelist best known for "The Remains of the Day" and other works about memory's pain and illusions, has won the Nobel Literature Prize
11:06AM ( 27 minutes ago )
IMF: Saudi unemployment up, economy stagnant despite reforms
The International Monetary Fund says it is advising Saudi Arabia to slow down some of its sensitive cutbacks as economic growth remains stagnant this year and unemployment rises
10:48AM ( 46 minutes ago )