OKC archbishop calls for end to death penalty in state amid court decision affirming its constitutionality

In response to a federal court decision affirming the constitutionality of Oklahoma’s death penalty protocol, Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City on Monday called on state lawmakers to end the death penalty.

“No matter the decision of the court on Oklahoma’s protocol, the use of the death penalty only contributes to the continued coarsening of society and to the spiral of violence,” Coakley said in a statement.

U.S. District Judge Stephen Friot, sitting in Oklahoma City, on June 6 ruled against 28 Oklahoma death row inmates’ argument that one of the drugs the state uses in its lethal injection protocol, the sedative midazolam, is an insufficient painkiller which makes the dying process severely and unconstitutionally painful, WRAL.com reported.

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