Seven California inmates have exhausted all regular appeals and could have their execution date set, reports the Orange County Register. The list gained significance with the announcement that the California Department of Corrections has obtained four doses of a lethal-injection drug that can be used during a state-authorized execution.
The state’s attempt to execute convicted rapist/murderer Albert Greenwood Brown, Jr., who has been on death row since 1982, failed in September when the state’s only dose of the lethal-injection drug passed its expiration date. It would have been California’s first execution in five years. Since then, officials have been scrambling to find an additional source of sodium thiopental to get the executions back on track. Opponents of the death penalty are expected to challenge the propriety of how and from whom prison authorities obtained the latest batch of the drug. The state has declined to say where it obtained the drug. The only U.S. manufacturer of the drug can’t make more because of a raw-material supply issue.