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California mulls lethal-injection changes to resume executions

SAN FRANCISCO — In the state's latest effort to restart long-stalled executions in California, Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday ordered prison officials to explore using a single drug for lethal injections instead of three.

Brown's order was disclosed in a two-page appeal of a Marin County judge's decision to toss out California's newly developed lethal injection regulations.

The new procedures called for prisoners to be put to death through the use of sodium thiopental, which may no longer be available in the United States, and two other drugs.

A federal judge in March barred the use of sodium thiopental purchased outside the country. There is no domestic maker of the product, and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has been ordered to turn over its foreign-bought drug to the Food and Drug Administration.

The FDA is considering whether to appeal the judge's order.


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