Missouri Moves To Create Its Own Lethal Drugs After Companies Refuse To Supply Execution

kosterchris_thumb220px-SQ_Lethal_Injection_RoomStates have been struggling with a shortage of lethal drugs to use in execution after companies refused to supply products for the purpose of killing the condemned. This has led one state to move back toward firing squads and electric chairs. Missouri however has moved to directly confront the industry ban on drug sales for execution by going into the business itself. Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster proposed that the state “establish a state-operated, DEA-licensed laboratory to produce the execution chemicals in our state.” That would conceivably allow Missouri not only to supply its own execution drugs but to even supply other states.

What is equally interesting is that the state has been using a “compounding pharmacy” which has asked for its name to remain secret to avoid an industry or professional backlash. The state has a Sunshine Law enacted in 1973 (RSMO Chapter 610) that guarantees access to meetings, records, votes, actions, and deliberations of public governmental bodies are to be open to the public. However, it is not clear whether the public can demand access to contracts and other information that would be available under the Freedom of Information Act in the federal system. Presumably, this company is receiving state money and most such contracts are public. Embarrassment or fear of public backlash is not usually a basis to withhold such ordinarily public information.

Koster argues that, by creating its own lab, the state can be open about its source: itself. He told the legislature that it “should remove market-driven participants and pressures from the system at the earliest opportunity . . . Eliminating outside business interests from Missouri’s execution protocol would improve the high level of public transparency that is demanded in the exercise of this extraordinary state power.”

Source: Kansas City

42 thoughts on “Missouri Moves To Create Its Own Lethal Drugs After Companies Refuse To Supply Execution”

  1. Paul C. Schulte “…governments can never be moral, they can be immoral or amoral, but never moral.”

    Truer words were n’er spoken or, in this case, written.

  2. The death penalty is no deterrent to crime and is just government sponsored revenge. With all of the issues facing Missouri and the rest of the country, spending money to make sure they have enough drugs to kill people is insane. And certainly not moral.

  3. Paul S,

    personanongrata – the death penalty is clearly moral.

    Really, Paul, it’s clearly moral?

    That is clearly your opinion and you are clearly confused.

    The use of capital punishment is clearly immoral.

    1. personanongrata – that is your opinion. And you are clearly confused.

      rafflaw – spending money on drugs is sane and governments can never be moral, they can be immoral or amoral, but never moral.

  4. Kraaken nails it…

    “Those drugs might let the prisoner have a peaceful and ‘pleasant’ death. No element of vengeance.”

    I’ve often wondered the same thing. A large dose of Morphine is, doctors tell us, not a bad way to go. And if we’re spending millions more per person to kill them than if we kept them in prison for life (a fate I would prefer murderers have to endure, as death is an easy way out of that suffering), why not go the extra mile and pay for morphine?

  5. @ Paul S,

    personanongrata – if a high school student can make meth the state of Missouri can make their own death cocktail.

    What is your point?

    Are you stating that because teenagers can cook methamphetamines that using them to murder someone would be moral?

  6. And if they elect a blind Governor like the present one then hope that the other five can shoot straight.

  7. I agree with Kraaken. But The Show Me State ought to pass a law to impose a death to human by firing squad of six with the Governor as the lead shooter. Do not use any weenie words like execution. ” Death to human convict by means of firing squad of Governor plus five.” HB 555.

  8. Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendricks, the list goes on and on. They are having problems finding a company to make drugs for lethal injection (otherwise known as corporate responsibility)? Why not just go down to the local pusher, buy some 98% pure heroin and shoot them up? It’s such dangerous stuff that apparently it kills thousands of people in it’s pure state. Or you could substitute IV morphine or dilaudid or Valium, or Demerol or a host of other drugs that would do the job. I fail to see the problem. Oh, yeah. Those drugs might let the prisoner have a peaceful and ‘pleasant’ death. No element of vengeance.

  9. Now what happened to ” eye for eye ” since when ( why ) are we to stop crimminels or killers from being rightful executed ?
    Denmark which is the prime producers of the lethal drug, have stopped their production after entering EU in 2011.
    Police kill innocent people every day, and USA kill innocent people by the thousands including women and children in their wars ” for peace ”
    Let them send their last stock to Guatanoma bay, where the prisoners are begging for mercy killing every day ! Talking about being human. Where is the real Justice ?

  10. Missouri Moves To Create Its Own Lethal Drugs After Companies Refuse To Supply Execution

    Instead of working toward solving the myriad of socio-economic problems confronting many folks in Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster has decided to spend some of the states finite tax resources on developing a new lethal chemical concoction in order to kill prison inmates sentenced to death.

    What is the state teaching it’s citizens? Death takes precedence over the living.

    What complete disgrace.

    1. personanongrata – if a high school student can make meth the state of Missouri can make their own death cocktail.

  11. Now that’s an interesting conundrum. If they have outsourced prison management that makes money by getting more prisoners, they are going to be directly at odds over the “newly convenient” execution industry who makes money off of everyone they wack. Maybe it’s just time to send in the scoops.

  12. States making their own drugs of death now. Hmmmm. They’ll probably start generating a profit. Guess they’ll want to increase the profit over time as well.

  13. Nick – I thought all pharmacists were compounding pharmacists. Anyway, this is an unusual solution to an unusual problem. I salute the state of Missouri. They are the “Show Me” state. 🙂

  14. Seems to solve not only their supply problem, but the concerns about the privacy of the pharmacy.

  15. I know a compounding pharmacist. Thanks for this piece, he will be outraged by this.

  16. Ah yes, we are not only in the business of murdering (that is after all what death penalty is) but let’s make some money on it too.

  17. Maybe we should just send all of our violent crimminals………. on a two month vacation, to Afghanistan…… In brightly colored clothing…..

Comments are closed.