By: Staff reports
Witnesses Don’t See Preparation For Lethal Injection
A federal judge in California set a Feb. 14 trial date for a challenge by two
press-rights groups seeking to expand the media’s right to witness executions.
Since the state switched over from the gas chamber to lethal injection in 1996,
prison officials have allowed witnesses to view only the final injection of a
condemned prisoner, not the 10 to 20 minutes of preparation.
Prison officials claim that letting outsiders view the preparation could put
guards at risk.
The Society of Professional Journalists and the California First Amendment
Coalition argued that the entire process should be viewed. California’s next
execution is scheduled for March 15.
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