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Public Defender's Office Sues Over Execution

The public defender’s office is suing the Arizona Department of Corrections over what many are calling a botched execution. There are too many factors up in the air to start litigation. 

The question of this case is about the two drugs used in Joseph Wood’s execution last July. But the state is in the process of reviewing the execution. And it isn’t clear whether the drug procedure will change based on the review. Federal Judge Neil Wake said it’s premature to litigate before the review is done. One of the Attorney’s suing the state is Mark Haddad. 

“The judge wants to avoid in the future litigation by crisis. So one of the steps he’s asked the parties to take at a preliminary stage," Haddad said. "One of the steps he’s asked the parties to take at a preliminary stage to discuss whether we can agree on a schedule for challenges in the future.”

There isn’t a time crunch because although there are inmates on death row, no execution dates have been set. The judge ordered the two sides to meet to work out a time frame between when a warrant for execution is issued until when it’s carried out.

Alexandra Olgin was a Senior Field Correspondent at KJZZ from 2013 to 2016.