Friday, March 5, 2021

South Carolina opts for firing squad if execution drugs are not available

Jeffrey Motts was pronounced dead on May 6, 2011, nearly 15 minutes after receiving a lethal injection for murdering his cellmate — the last inmate to die by lethal injection in South Carolina.

Nearly a decade later, state senators moved closer on Tuesday to ending a moratorium forced by a lack of access to lethal injection drugs by voting to add the firing squad as an execution method, reported the Washington Post.

The bill would force death row inmates to choose between lethal injections, the electric chair, or the firing squad — but if the drugs aren’t available for an injection, it would mandate one of the other two options instead.

The measure’s supporters argued the change would bring closure to the families of victims who have waited years for death sentences to be carried out in South Carolina, one of 28 states where the death penalty remains legal.

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