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What's Next For Nevada's Death Penalty?

A messy execution in Arizona that made national headlines could buoy efforts by death penalty opponents to stave off capital punishment for some 80 Nevada inmates awaiting execution. But supporters of executions believe the problems can be corrected and that the death sentences in Nevada should be carried out.

Nevada has not had an execution since 2006. Before any executions take place, a new death chamber needs to be built.

Opponents of Nevada’s efforts to build an execution chamber say the cases in Arizona, Ohio and Oklahoma could be added to the ever-growing number of legal challenges to capital punishment in the Silver State. Adding to the argument that the use of lethal injection, as its now being carried out with a mix of drugs, should be considered a cruel and unusual form of punishment.

Nevada’s execution chamber is at Nevada State Prison in Carson City, which was decommissioned in 2012. It’s also unknown whether the state has up-to-date pharmaceuticals to perform a lethal injection execution.

Support comes from

So it’s unclear if the state could even carry out an execution is a warrant was issued.


Scott Coffee, attorney with Public Defender in Clark County

Assemblyman John Hambrick, Republican, Assembly District 2

Michael Kiefer, courts and legal writer for the Arizona Republic

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