MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) – Alabama could allow death row inmates to be executed by nitrogen gas, a method that has so far never been used.
The Alabama Senate on Tuesday voted 25-8 to add nitrogen gas to allowable execution methods. The bill now moves to the Alabama House.
Robert Dunham of the Death Penalty Information Center said Mississippi and Oklahoma also allow execution by nitrogen gas. However, Dunham said an execution has never been carried out that way.
Sen. Trip Pittman, the Republican bill sponsor, said Alabama needs another execution method as lethal injection faces court challenges.
The bill met with pushback from lawmakers who called it experimentation.
Sen. Vivian Davis Figures, a Mobile Democrat, said it is an execution method that “has never been tried before.”