Friday, February 11, 2011
TDCJ says it thinks it can find enough drugs to carry out executions through April
Attention all execution drug makers : TDCJ needs you. As previously reported over the past few months by main stream media and even the Backagte, TDCJ has been running low on the drugs used to execute the condemned in Texas.
The Associated Press reported today that the only U.S. manufacturer of the lethal injection drug sodium thiopental is discontinuing the drug's production. According to the AP, Hospira Inc., of Lake Forest, Ill., decided to switch manufacturing of the anesthetic from its North Carolina plant to a plant in Italy. But Italian authorities insisted the company guarantee the drug wouldn't be used in executions. There has been some talk about possibly using another drug to replace the now hard to get sodium thiopental, that being the drug that Veterinarians use to put down animals, pentobarbital.
Exactly how low the state is on the lethal combination of drugs is still in debate and open records requests for those numbers have been ignored by TDCJ. Within those requests also lays that of this website. The Texas Attorney General has ruled the information releasable but has done nothing to enforce the release of information from the agency. That may be an issue for the Travis county courts to decide.
The Houston Chronicle reported this morning that Rick Thaler, director of the Texas Dept. of Criminal Justice Institutional Division, told the Associated Press Friday outside a state prison board meeting the issue has been a top priority within the agency for several months.