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First U.S. Execution by Nitrogen

First U.S. Execution by Nitrogen

Alabama carried out the first American execution using nitrogen gas on January 25, 2024 executing Kenneth Smith. United Nations human rights experts warned that the untested execution method might result in a painful and humiliating death. Moreover, it is likely to constitute torture, which violates international human rights treaties ratified by the U.S. Gov. Kay Ivey of Alabama stated she had chosen not to exercise her power to spare Mr. Smith. She stated in a statement that,  “The execution was lawfully carried out by nitrogen hypoxia, the method previously requested by Mr. Smith as an alternative to lethal injection,”

Other states such as,  Mississippi and Oklahoma have also authorized their prisons to carry out executions by nitrogen hypoxia, as the method is known, if they cannot use lethal injection, though it has never been tried.

 

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Lila Heuvelink
Lila Heuvelink, Staff Reporter
This is Lila’s first year in The Newspaper Club; she loves painting and baking. She is excited to start writing!

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