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Oklahoma Execution Botched and Halted, Inmate Dies of Heart Attack

Update: The execution was botched and halted, but the inmate then had a heart attack and died. The execution of the second inmate was postponed.

Despite the controversy over lethal injection drugs, Oklahoma will proceed tonight to kill two inmates. The federal defender for one of them says:

“Tonight, in a climate of secrecy and political posturing, Oklahoma intends to kill two death row prisoners using an experimental new drug protocol, including a paralytic, making it impossible to know whether the executions will comport with the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual suffering...We have serious questions — were these drugs imported, are they counterfeit, what is the expiration date, are they tainted?”

Oklahoma's new drug protocol has not yet been tested. One of the drugs, the one that sedates and reduces pain, will be given in a much smaller amount that provided by another state that uses the same drug in its death cocktail.

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