US

Utah Approves Death By Firing Squad

Evan Wilt Contributor

A shortage in lethal injection drugs has prompted Gov. Gary Herbert to make Utah America’s only state allowing executions by firing squad Monday, The Associated Press reports.

If the shortage persists, execution by firing squad will be used as an alternative method for capital punishment.

Utah is one of several states seeking different forms of capital punishment after a botched lethal injection in Oklahoma last year.

“We regret anyone ever commits the heinous crime of aggravated murder to merit the death penalty, and we prefer to use our primary method of lethal injection when such a sentence is issued,” Herbert spokesman Marty Carpenter told the AP. “However, when a jury makes the decision and a judge signs a death warrant, enforcing that lawful decision is the obligation of the executive branch.”

Currently 32 states allow the death penalty. Utah presently has nine people on death row and has carried out the death penalty seven times since 1976.