Judge Orders State To Release Lethal Injection Drug Information

Oct 12, 2015

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen
Credit PBS

Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Wendell Griffen has ordered the state to disclose the contents of its three drug lethal injection mixture before proceeding with eight executions.

While state law allows the drugs’ names be withheld, attorneys for the inmates argue secrecy hampers their ability to challenge a potentially cruel and unusual form of punishment.  

University of Arkansas Bowen School of Law professor Angela Epps says the case may go before the state supreme court.

"I would think the state is going to object to even  this being released in the context of discovery," she said. "You could have the same problem obtaining the drugs.”                             

Last week Judge Griffen temporarily halted the first two executions scheduled for October 21. Arkansas has not held an execution in nearly ten years because of litigation and difficulty obtaining access to lethal injection drugs.