Drug protocol raises concern in Nebraska execution

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LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – Ever since the electric chair was deemed inhumane, Nebraska has been trying for several years to come up with a lethal injection protocol. Now that Carey Dean Moore is scheduled to be executed, the drugs are being questioned.

“Nebraska is using an untested protocol that greatly heightens the risk of pain,” said associate dean and professor of the Nebraska College of Law, Eric Berger.

Berger says there will be four drugs being used. The first drug is essentially Valium which is there to relax the inmate. The second drug is Fentanyl which is an opioid. The third drug is a paralytic and the fourth is potassium chloride which stops the heart.

Berger is concerned about the execution and says there is a lot of questions about whether the protocol will actually inflict a lot of pain on the inmate.

“The third drug, the paralytic might conceal any pain the inmate feels so might not know if the inmate is suffering an excruciating death because the paralytic makes it look painless, makes it look like a peaceful execution even if its not,” said Berger.

He says another problem is with the Fentanyl because its acting as anesthetic in the execution even though that’s not it’s purpose.

Carey Dean Moore has not allowed his attorney’s to challenge the protocol, so the state hasn’t had to defend it in court.

Berger says one of the drugs being used expires in a month and he doesn’t know how easy it will be for the state to get more.

“Companies don’t want to sell their drugs to states to use in executions and states are going to have to scramble to find the drugs.”

Carey Dean Moore’s execution is scheduled for Tuesday at 10:00 a.m. 

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