COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina senators have added a firing squad to the electric chair as alternatives if the state can’t execute condemned inmates via lethal injection.
The Senate then approved the bill Tuesday on a key 32-11 vote with several Democrats joining Republicans in the proposal which would allow South Carolina to restart executions after nearly 10 years.
The state has been forced to delay executions because its supply of lethal injection drugs expired and it hasn’t been able to buy more. Companies that produce the drugs have refused to sell them to states for use in executions in recent years.
Currently, eight other states can use electric chairs for use in executions. Utah, Oklahoma and Mississippi allow firing squads.
The House is considering a similar bill without the firing squad option but could consider the Senate version after a procedural vote by senators finalizes the bill later this week.