Georgia Attempts to Fast Track Executions as Lethal Drug Expires

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As the state of Georgia’s lethal injection supply nears expiration, they are attempting to fast track planned executions.

On Thursday, Andrew Allen Cook, 38, was executed after he was convicted for killing two college students.

Now, the state is trying to execute a mentally disabled man, Warren Lee Hill, after he killed his girlfriend and a fellow inmate in 1999.

The entire supply of pentobarbital is set to expire on March 1. Once it expires, they will have no way of executing the 94 prisoners currently on death row.

It is difficult to obtain the lethal drug, as many drug companies are going out of business and others are unwilling to participate in executions.

This has led to a decrease in the number of executions per year, and some states are forced to look to other countries, like India, to supply the drug.

Many other countries have made it harder to obtain the drug. Danish firm Lundbeck has set up tough new measures in hopes that the U.S. won’t be able to execute prisoners any longer.

In 2012, a few states, including Georgia, were found to have bought the lethal injection drug from an unlicensed company in London that was being run out of the back of a driving school.

Yesterday’s execution of Cook was the first where the state’s new single dose injection was used, as the state previously used a three-drug combination.

They were forced to make the single drug change after Hospira, a US manufacturer of sodium thiopental, stopped producing the drug in 2011.

As the state attempts to put many executions on the fast-track, anti-death penalty campaigners are outraged.

Sara Totonchi, director of the Southern Center for Human Rights, said, “This highlights the nastiness of the process that the AG should be racing to kill prisoners ahead of an expiration date.”