Federal Judge Tours New San Quentin Death Chamber
There are 720 inmates awaiting execution on San Quentin's death row. U.S. District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel, who placed executions on hold in 2006 due to concerns that the chamber was antiquated and did not ensure a humane death, toured the new $900,000 death chamber today.
Judge Fogel didn't indicate whether his concerns have been satisfied, and will issue rulings later. He toured the old facility in 2006. Here's how the old procedure worked, according to San Quentin Operational Procedure No. 770. The 2007 revised protocol is here, but that too was declared invalid Then the state enacted Cal. Code Regs. tit. 15 3349 et seq. Here is Judge Fogel's September, 2010 ruling after the 9th Circuit remanded his decision on that.
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