Nevada execution called off after company objects to its drugs being used

Scott Dozier wants to die by untested method, even if it’s painful

Scott Dozier wants to die by untested method, even if it’s painful

Alvogen alleges that the state began buying drugs covertly and that Nevada's department of corrections used a licence held by the state's chief medical officer to surreptitiously obtain the midazolam. Dozier has insisted he wants to be executed and doesn't care if it's painful.

Noting that "eyewitness accounts of recent executions using midazolam are full of grizzly details", ACLU Nevada's legal director Amy Rose wrote in a blog post on Wednesday.

"While Alvogen takes no position on the death penalty itself, Alvogen's products were developed to save and improve patients' lives and their use in executions is fundamentally contrary to this goal", the company said in its complaint.

The judge ruled that based on that letter, Alvogen had a reasonable chance of winning its lawsuit, and she issued the temporary restraining order against the use of the drug.

According to the Review-Journal, Gonzalez has scheduled a status hearing in the case for September 10, while Dozier's death warrant expires at the end of the week. The pharmaceutical company also raised fears that the drug could lead to a botched execution, citing cases that apparently went awry elsewhere around the country.

Alvogen learned from disclosures made in response to litigation by the Nevada Branch of the American Civil Liberties Union that the department of corrections acquired the drug from Cardinal Health, a distributor, through purchase orders from May 2018 that were to be completed in June 2018, according to the lawsuit.

Pfizer protested past year, but Nevada refused its demand to return the diazepam and fentanyl it manufactured. The state refused, however.

Dozier is slated for execution Wednesday night at 8PM.

Dozier, a twice-convicted killer who attempted suicide in the past, repeated his desire to die during a brief telephone interview Sunday with the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

"This whole action is just PR damage control", Mr Smith said of Alvogen.

This would be the first time that fentanyl, one of the central drugs in the U.S. opioid epidemic, has been used in an execution in the United States, and it likely would be a first for cisatracurium as well, said Robert Dunham, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center.

District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez said the Nevada Department of Corrections can't use midazolam, a sedative produced by pharmaceutical company Alvogen Inc.

"It has been at the centre of executions that have gone visibly wrong in every single state in which it has been used", said Maya Foa, the director of the ant-death penalty group Reprieve. The first attempt-by a different company in Arkansas-failed a year ago.

Alvogen's midazolam was substituted in May for Nevada's expired stock of diazepam, commonly known as Valium.

That's why it is accusing Nevada of illegitimately acquiring the midazolam it planned to use to execute Dozier.

He says that he prefers death over life in prison.

There's a limit to how much artwork and physical exercise a person can do in prison, Dozier said in court hearings and letters to the Las Vegas judge who postponed his execution.

In the November case, Dozier was sentenced to die for robbing, killing and dismembering 22-year-old Jeremiah Miller at the iconic (and now demolished) La Concha motel on the Las Vegas Strip. The victim's torso was found in a suitcase dumped in a trash bin in Las Vegas, according to the Nevada Department of Corrections.

In 2005, Dozier was sentenced to 22 years in prison for the shooting and mauling of 26-year-old Jasen Greene, whose body was found in 2002 in a shallow grave outside Phoenix. A witness testified that Dozier used a sledgehammer to break Greene's limbs so the corpse would fit in a plastic tote that Dozier used to transport methamphetamine, equipment and chemicals.

Although Dozier dropped attempts to save his own life, he allowed federal public defenders to challenge the execution protocol. They argued the untried three-drug combination would be less humane than putting down a pet. In 2014, an inmate in OH and another one in Arizona were left gasping and snorting before they died in what death penalty foes called botched executions.