Oklahoma Abandons Lethal Injection

Oklahoma Department of Corrections - March 2018

In March 2018, Oklahoma became the first state to categorically reject lethal injection as a method of execution, moving to a new method of execution using nitrogen gas. In abandoning lethal injection, state officials noted that in order to carry out lethal injection executions, they would have to obtain the drugs “illegally,” and did not want to buy drugs from “seedy individuals” on “back streets” in order to continue to use it.

They also referred to problems with lethal injections in other states such as Alabama, where Doyle Lee Hamm had been “punctured eleven times” over the course of several hours in a prolonged execution that Oklahoma officials described as “inhumane”.