SD’s First Execution In 60 Years Set For Next Week


South Dakota is preparing for its first execution in 60 years, says the Associated Press. It is nearly a year since Gov. Mike Rounds delayed an execution over legal concerns about the lethal injection mixture prison officials planned to use. Elijah Page, 25, is scheduled to be put to death next week. He has ended all appeals for a 2000 murder. Rounds postponed Page’s planned Aug. 29, 2006, execution over concerns that a 1984 state law requiring the use of a two-drug mixture in executions could put prison officials at legal risk if they instead administered a three-drug combination that has become standard in lethal injection executions. State legislators amended the law to allow prison officials to use whatever lethal injection mixture they choose.

Page would be among a handful of people his age or younger put to death since capital punishment was reinstated in 1979. South Dakota had the death penalty when it became a state in 1889 but abolished it in 1915. Capital punishment was reinstated in 1939.


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