OHIO – Five days ago Alabama carried out the nation’s first execution under a capital punishment system using nitrogen gas, now Ohio is aiming to do the same.
Ohio Governor Dewine for the last five years has put death penalties on hold due to not being able to obtain the needed drugs to carry out lethal injection without exposing itself to a legal action. This new legislative effort could put that back on track.
The bill, sponsored by Republican state Reps. Brian Stewart and Phil Plummer, would add nitrogen hypoxia as an additional option to carry out capital punishment.
During today’s press conference, Republican Brian Stewart pointed to nitrogen hypoxia being used in some assisted suicides in Europe.
Assisted suicide, in which somebody is given the means to end their own life, is legal in Switzerland. About 1,300 people died there in this way in 2020.
“The bottom line: Ohio’s death penalty is a farce and a broken promise of justice – and it must be fixed. This discussion has been a long time coming, so let’s have it now. If Ohio chooses to end capital punishment, let it own the decision in the full light of day. I will stand on the other side, with the families of the slain,” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost.
Forty-nine-year-old Timothy J. Hoffner is convicted of murdering 22-year-old Christopher Hammer in Toledo, Ohio, on September 22, 1993. Timothy has spent the last 26 years on death row in Ohio. He planned and executed the killing of Hammer in Toledo when his first attempt to kill Hammer went ary he tied him up dug a grave placed Hammer in and buried him alive. Hoffner then used Hammers identifications to sell his car. Hoffner was sentenced to death row in the 90s, He was previously scheduled to be executed in 2019, however, that date was rescheduled to August 11, 2021, execution date has since been stayed by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine. Since 2015, Ohio has had ongoing problems obtaining execution drugs to carry out executions. In 2019, Governor Mike Dewine announced an unofficial moratorium on executions in the state, however, since Ohio schedules its executions years in advance, this has resulted in numerous executions being rescheduled. Timothy’s execution has been rescheduled to June 18, 2024.