Days after Gov. John Kasich delayed execution dates for a dozen inmates, Ohio Senate President Keith Faber, R-Celina, said politicos need to debate “other solutions,” including the possibility of bringing back the electric chair.
“The death penalty if we’re going to conduct it in Ohio it needs to be done fairly, it needs to be done safely and it needs be done in a way that is transparent,” Faber told reporters on Wednesday. “So from that perspective if we can’t get the drugs that our protocol calls for, either we need to change our protocols or we need to think about other solutions.”
He continued: “There are a lot of people out there talking about other solutions. I’ve heard everything from using heroin to using nitrogen to going back to using the electric chair. That’s a debate that probably need to have.”
Ohio replaced the gallows with the electric chair in 1897. Ohio electrocuted 312 men and three women between 1897 and 1963, beginning with a 17-year-old boy from Hamilton County. The state officially retired “Old Sparky” in February 2002.
On Monday, the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction announced execution dates would be bumped to 2017 and beyond while the state works to get the drugs needed for lethal injections. Ohio has not had an execution since January 2014 when the execution of killer-rapist Dennis McGuire took 26 minutes. DRC used a previously untested drug combo to execute McGuire.
Gallup Poll reported last week that 61 percent of adult Americans favor the death penalty for convicted murderers, down from 63 percent in 2009. That marks a gradual decline in support for capital punishment since reaching a high-point of 80 percent in 1994, according to Gallup.