AP Radio AP Radio News:

Jun 14, 5:35 PM EDT

Appeals court hears arguments over Ohio's execution method


Interactives
Inside the Texas Death Chamber
Supreme Court Oral Arguments: Is Lethal Injection Unconstitutional?
Iconic Texas Executions
Views on the Death Penalty: A Global Perspective

Death Penalty by State
Documents
Letter requesting a stay of execution for Claude Jones
Then-Gov. George W. Bush's reply to Jone's reprieve request
Ohio struggles to get advice on lethal injection
Nebraska Supreme Court's Ruling on the Electric Chair (02/08/08)
Latest News
Ohio killer who survived execution wants next try blocked

At 87, he hopes to eventually see execution of wife's killer

Appeals court hears arguments over Ohio's execution method

Arizona, prisoners reach deal to settle death penalty suit

CINCINNATI (AP) -- A federal appeals court has heard arguments over the constitutionality of Ohio's new three-drug execution method.

At issue before the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati on Wednesday was the effectiveness of the first drug used in the method, a sedative called midazolam (mih-DAY'-zoh-lam).

Midazolam has been used in problematic executions in Arizona, Arkansas and Ohio in which inmates didn't appear fully sedated before the second and third drugs took effect.

Lawyers opposing midazolam say it creates an unconstitutional risk of harm to inmates.

The state says the massive dose of 500 milligrams of midazolam is enough to render inmates unconscious. They also say the U.S. Supreme Court previously upheld the drug's use in Oklahoma in a 2015 case.

The appeals court is expected to rule soon, likely within weeks.

© 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.