Legal challenges of new Ohio execution drug likely

By

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Ohio's imminent announcement of a new lethal injection drug is likely to be followed quickly by legal challenges.

When the state switched to pentobarbital a little over two years ago, a federal court filing opposing it arrived within a couple of weeks.

Columbus federal judge Gregory Frost oversees lawsuits against Ohio's execution process and says the pattern of challenges and counter challenges is common each time the state changes its method.

The state's supply of the pentobarbital expired last month. Ohio prison officials have said they expect to announce the new drug by Friday.

They've hinted they're considering a compounded version of the drug, involving individual batches mixed by a pharmacist.

A lawsuit in Georgia is challenging that state's switch to the same process.

©2014 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.