AG asks Nevada high court to nix judge’s execution-drug ruling

The attorney general’s office wants the Nevada Supreme Court to wave off a lower court judge’s ruling that blocks the state from using the sedative midazolam in capital punishment.

In a motion filed this week, Deputy Solicitor General Jordan Smith asked the high court to decide by Oct. 19.

Late last month, after a lengthy hearing, District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez barred the prison system from using its supply of a sedative produced by the drug company Alvogen in the lethal injection of condemned killer Scott Dozier, essentially halting the possible execution for the foreseeable future.

The judge rejected a request from two other drug manufacturers to prevent the state from using fentanyl and a paralytic in a three-drug lethal injection cocktail.

”So even though Alvogen’s legal theories are unprecedented, have been rejected by every other court that has heard them, and are unsupported by the actual facts, the state nonetheless remains enjoined from carrying out Dozier’s lawful sentence,” Smith wrote. “Alvogen lacked viable causes of action to begin with and now an execution has been stopped by sanction.”

Department of Corrections officials have said repeatedly that they would only proceed with the trio of drugs in the execution protocol.

Alvogen has not responded to the appeal.

Nevada’s prison director, James Dzurenda, testified that he disregarded letters from three drug manufacturers who did not want their medications used in an execution.

Hikma Pharmaceuticals, makers of the painkiller fentanyl, and Sandoz, which produces a paralytic, had made state officials aware that they objected to using the drugs in an execution long before Dozier was supposed to be put to death.

Gonzalez ruled that all three companies could suffer irreparable harm to their reputations, along with lost sales, lost licensing and several other factors, if the drugs were used in an execution. She wrote that the effect is “largely intangible and occurs over a prolonged period of time.”

Smith called the harm “speculative,” arguing that the ban caused “actual harm” to the public and Dozier’s victims.

“The state’s and victims’ interest should not be so cavalierly discounted,” Smith wrote. “Corporate profits do not outweigh criminal justice.”

The inmate, who waived his legal appeals in late 2016, was sentenced to die in 2007 after first-degree murder and robbery convictions in the killing of Jeremiah Miller. Dozier had a murder conviction in Arizona before he was brought to Nevada to face charges in Miller’s death.

Contact David Ferrara at dferrara@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039. Follow @randompoker on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Crime
Family members of murder victims talk about their loss
Family members of murder victims talk about their loss. Susan Nash, 52, was killed in a shooting along with her daughter and one of her three sons on Sunday night. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Sayegh Cold Case Turns 40
Cary Sayegh was abducted from the playground of the Albert Einstein Hebrew Day School in Las Vegas in 1978. His body has never been found. (File Photo)
Review held in death of man after encounter with Las Vegas police
The mother of Tashii Brown, who died after an encounter with Las Vegas police on the Strip, not satisfied after public review of evidence. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vehicle of Interest in January Homicide
Las Vegas police released footage Friday of a “vehicle of interest” from a deadly shooting in January. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Hostage escapes clutches of robber before shooting
Metropolitan Police Department footage shows a man wearing a motorcycle helmet, identified by police as 27-year-old Mario B. Trejo, with one arm wrapped around a woman’s neck and held a handgun to her head.
Sunset Park Vigil
A small group of people gathered in Sunset Park to remember the three children recently killed in the area.
Henderson police bodycam footage of officer-involved shooting
Henderson police released body-worn camera footage of an officer-involved shooting in a grocery store parking lot at 2667 Windmill Parkway on Aug. 12, 2018. (Henderson Police Department)
Metro Asst. Sheriff Brett Zimmerman on Aug. 8 officer-involved shooting
Metropolitan Police Department Assistant Sheriff Brett Zimmerman met with media Monday to discuss the details of the 14th officer-involved shooting of the year. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like