Texas is down to its last dose of lethal injection drugs. On April 9, pending court action, Kent William Sprouse -- who killed a Ferris police officer and another man in 2002 -- will be given that three-drug cocktail and Texas will become one of a number of states forced to improvise.
|Texas Department of Criminal Justice|
Just this week, Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed legislation that will allow the execution of condemned inmates by firing squad should his state continue to struggle to acquire lethal injection drugs. New Hampshire offers hanging as a backup to lethal injection, while Oklahoma has the return of the electric chair as a contingency should lethal injection ever be ruled unconstitutional. The Oklahoma Senate is also considering a bill that would allow the state to kill inmates by asphyxiation with nitrogen. Tennessee made the electric chair its backup plan last year.
Texas' current lethal-injection drug was adopted in 2012 after acquiring sodium thiopental, pancuronium bromide and potassium chloride -- the state's longstanding three-drug cocktail, became difficult. Now, pentobarbital, the only drug in the state's execution regimen, has become nearly impossible to acquire.More »