NEBRASKA (USA): EXECUTION METHOD CHANGED TO LETHAL INJECTION
May 28, 2009: Nebraska Changes Execution Method to Lethal Injection. Today the Nebraska Unicameral passed and Governor Dave Heineman signed LB- 36, changing Nebraska's method of capital punishment from electrocution to lethal injection.
The bill passed on a 34-12 vote in the morning. Three senators didn't vote.
Gov. Dave Heineman signed the bill in the afternoon.
The bill is set to take effect Sept. 1. But long before any executions can happen, the state Department of Correctional Services will have to develop the protocol for lethal injections and the new law will be tested in court.
Attorney General Jon Bruning expects the state to have an execution protocol in place within a year and be ready to request a new execution date be set for 1 of the men on death row within two or three years. Nebraska has been without a means of execution since February 2008, when the state Supreme Court ruled the electric chair was unconstitutional because it amounted to cruel and unusual punishment.
Nebraska was the only state with electrocution as its sole means of execution. There are 11 men on Nebraska's death row; the last execution was in 1997. (Sources: Associated Press, 28/05/2009)