State obtains third drug needed for lethal injections

Charles Warner and Clayton Lockett

The State of Oklahoma says it has acquired a manufactured source or a drug needed for lethal injections but says they will not disclose the supplier.

The state announced it's acquisition of a manufactured source for vecuronium bromide in a release from the Oklahoma Attorney General's Office. The state had previously acquired manufactured versions of the two other drugs needed in the lethal injection process (midazolam and potassium chloride).

With the acquisition of the third manufactured source, the state will not use any compounded drugs in their exactions.

Attorneys for death row inmates Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner had raised questions regarding the state using compounding pharmacies as the source of lethal injection drugs. The state reports the drugs are all from FDA approved sources.

The attorneys for Lockett and Warner had previously asked the state identify the manufacturer of the midazolam. The state refused to identify the supplier and released this statement:

"We decline at this time to identify the manufacturer, distributor, and/or supplier of the manufactured midazolam intended for use in the execution of your clients. This information is irrelevant to your clients and disclosure could lead to harassment or intimidation which will have a chilling effect on the State's ability to acquire these drugs for future executions."

The execution of Lockett is scheduled for April 22. Warner's execution is scheduled for April 29.

The attorneys for the prisoners also filed an Emergency Application for Stay of Execution in the Oklahoma Supreme Court. The stay application asks the court to delay the executions pending the appeal to the Attorney General's Office.