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Attorney General's News Release

May 29, 2014

AG Koster speaks on challenges of lethal injection in Missouri

Jefferson City, Mo. – Attorney General Chris Koster today spoke to attendees of the Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis conference at the Lake of the Ozarks regarding the history of the death penalty in Missouri and the challenges facing Missouri's lethal injection process. 

In his speech, Koster said:

"Lethal injection relies upon an uneasy cooperation between medical professionals who assist in the executions, pharmaceutical companies that provide the chemicals, and the State that is ultimately responsible for coordination of executions and on whose legal authority the process is carried out. 

"In recent years, this cooperative arrangement has become so strained that continued use of lethal injection as the preferred execution method is currently being reconsidered in several states.

"For Missouri to maintain lethal injection …it is my belief the legislature should remove market-driven participants and pressures from the system and appropriate funds to establish a state-operated, DEA-licensed, laboratory to produce the execution chemicals in our state. As a matter of policy, Missouri should not be reliant on merchants whose identities must be shielded from public view or who can exercise unacceptable leverage over this profound state act."

Read AG Koster's speech

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