Missouri switches to new execution drug

ST. LOUIS — The Missouri Department of Corrections said Tuesday it is switching to a new lethal injection drug, less than two weeks after the governor halted executions until it could find a replacement for the anesthetic propofol.

The Corrections Department said in a news release that it will use the sedative pentobarbital. The Death Penalty Information Center said 13 states use the drug for executions.

The execution of Joseph Franklin on Nov. 20 is still on, the news release stated. Franklin was convicted of killing Gerald Gordon outside a St. Louis-area synagogue in 1977.

Nixon on Oct. 11 halted the execution of Allen Nicklasson, scheduled for Oct. 23, in part because the European Union was weighing export limits on propofol if it was used in an execution. Propofol is a widely used anesthetic and is mostly made in Europe. Nixon ordered a halt to all executions until the issue was resolved.

It wasn’t immediately clear how much pentobarbital Missouri has in supply. Messages seeking comment from Corrections Department spokesman David Owen were not immediately returned. Franklin’s attorney, Jennifer Herndon, also did not immediately respond to phone and email messages.

The department’s news release said it’s also adding a compounding pharmacy to its execution team. The pharmacy will be responsible for providing pentobarbital for executions. Typically, compounding pharmacists process ingredients to fit the needs of individual patients.

Texas and Ohio area among other states that have turned to compounding pharmacies to prepare new batches of pentobarbital after large drug manufacturers balked. Oklahoma was the first to use pentobarbital as a single execution drug.

It wasn’t clear if or when a new execution date would be set for Nicklasson, convicted of the 1994 killing of Excelsior Springs businessman Richard Drummond after Drummond stopped along Interstate 70 to help after a car carrying Nicklasson and two others became disabled. Another of the trio, Dennis Skillicorn, was executed in 2009.

More in Local News

Bicycle tour raises money for dialysis patients

Volunteers also shared health information and put together care packages for homeless women.

Elderly couple escape serious injuries in crash with train

The driver drove down tracks instead of a road, hitting a slow-moving train near Stanwood.

Expect river levels to keep rising, though sun is on the way

Some could crest above minor and moderate flood levels.

Arrests made in robbery-turned fatal Everett shooting

A man, 24, and woman, 18, were found at a hotel in Seattle.

Boeing reaches out to schools

Company employees helped Everett students at recent reading and Manufacturing Day events.

5-vehicle collision sends school bus into ditch; no injuries

No students were hurt when a school bus crashed into… Continue reading

Fire crew returns early from wildfires in Northern California

Four Everett firefighters returned from battling California wildfires late Thursday… Continue reading

Theft lands former insurance salesman 50 days in jail

A former insurance salesman is expected to report to jail… Continue reading

Pair of intrepid musicians climb N. Cascades summits to play

Rose Freeman and Anastasia Allison pack their instruments up mountains for high-altitude recitals.

Most Read