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U.S. Supreme Court
In lethal injection case, high court has a chance to take a bold step
In lethal injection case, high court has a chance to take a bold step

In the effort to find less gruesome ways to execute condemned prisoners, more than two dozen states — including California — adopted a lethal injection protocol developed by Oklahoma in the late 1970s in which the prisoner is rendered insensate with one injection, then given a paralytic to halt breathing and a third drug to stop the heart. Without that first shot, experts agree, the next two injections would cause significant pain. The drug of choice for the first injection has been a fast-acting barbiturate, preferably sodium thiopental or pentobarbital. But in the last several years, increasing opposition to the death penalty — and a desire to distance themselves from...

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