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Oklahoma Judge Rules State Execution Law Unconstitutional

Death Chamber at Southern Ohio Correctional Facility
Photo by Mike Simons/Getty Images

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma judge has ruled that the state’s execution law is unconstitutional because it doesn’t allow inmates access to the court system.

Under Oklahoma law, no one may disclose the source of drugs used in executions — even if an inmate sues and wants the information as part of the discovery process. Oklahoma County District Judge Patricia Parrish said Monday that provision violates due process rights guaranteed in the Constitution.

Inmates Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner sued the state last month. They want to know whether the drugs to be used at their executions next month are pure and that they wouldn’t suffer before dying.

Lockett is scheduled to die April 22. Warner’s execution is April 29.

A separate court is considering stay requests from the men.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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