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December 28, 2007

How Ohio executes

As detailed in this AP story, "Lorain County Common Pleas Judge James Burge on Thursday unsealed the 632-page binder of documents on how the state executes death row inmates, revealing everything from the qualifications of execution team members to how the warden signals for the lethal injection drugs to be administered."  Here are some more interesting details from the story:

The state has been reluctant to say anything about who serves on the 16-member execution team and, particularly, the medical training received by the three members who prepare an inmate's veins and inject the drugs.  The documents show that at least one medical team member is certified by the American Society of Clinical Pathologists' Board of Registry.  That organization handles certifications for numerous jobs in pathology and laboratory work, including hematologists, phlebotomists and those who work in blood banks, according to the society's Web site....

Before they join the execution team, any would-be member must pass a rigorous screening process that includes a review of their record with the prison system, gain the approval of the warden and other prison officials and be confirmed by a vote of the current execution team members, according to the documents....  The team members — three of whom have participated in all 26 executions since Ohio resumed executing death row inmates in 1999 — undergo training at least four times a year, according to the documents.

In addition to regular and pre-execution training, medical personnel on the execution team must keep their certifications on injecting intravenous drugs current.  The documents turned over by the state reveal several booklets on administering drugs, including finding suitable veins, and how to handle the equipment used in the process.

As the story explains, judge Burge is scheduled on January 8 to "consider whether lethal injection is unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment."   However, the day before, Monday, Jan. 7, is whether the Supreme COurt is scheduled to hear arguments in its lethal injection case Baze.  My first reaction to this story is that these new Ohio documents provide more support for defenders of lethal injection protocols than for opponents.

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December 28, 2007 at 12:56 PM | Permalink


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Via Doug Berman bin ich auf einen Artikel im Columbus Dispatch gestoßen, in welchem berichtet wird dass Richter James Burge am vergangenen Donnerstag den Inhalt einer 632 Seiten dicken Mappe öffentlich gemacht hat. Diese Mappe enthält Dokumente mit ... [Read More]

Tracked on Dec 29, 2007 5:07:30 PM


You mean that the state actually works hard not to cause pain . . . . say it ain't so. This just points up how bogus these claims are. I just don't see how such procedures could ever be characterized as "wanton", and, unless the Supreme Court changes things, these procedures should easily pass muster, the bleatings of capital defense attorneys and hacks like Judge "100 watt bulb" Fogel, notwithstanding.

Posted by: federalist | Dec 28, 2007 1:13:48 PM

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