Here’s a great resource for a quick overview of the death penalty in the United States, state by state, including clemency granted and denied and various issues with execution methods.
Compiled by CNN, you can read it here as their Death Penalty Fast Facts.
Among the details found there:
1. Since 1973, there have been 157 death row exonerations and 26 of those executions have been in Florida. That’s 17%.
2. There are 62 people sitting on the Federal Death Row — no, not any state. The federal government can execute, too.
3. A Florida governor has suspended the death penalty, Governor Jeb Bush did so after the horrific execution of Angel Diaz back in 2006.
4. A drug called sodium thiopental was popular in lethal execution methods in several states until the DEA began questioning where the states were getting their supply and seized all of Georgia’s supply of thiopental.
That led to the only US manufacturer to stop making it, and overseas manufacturers to refuse to sell it to American buyers. Result? States began looking for a substitutefor sodium thiopental. Georgia chose pentobarbital to replace sodium thiopental in its 3-drug cocktail.
5. Pentobarbital hasn’t been so easy to find for executions either. Ohio couldn’t find any pentobarbital to buy, so it substituted midazolam along with hydromorphone in its lethal injection procedure. This was used on Alan Johnson, who reportedly gasped for air for as long as 13 minutes before passing away 24 minutes after the execution began.