ADVANTAGES

Since 1990, all executions have been carried out at the Broad River Capital Punishment Facility.

By State statute witnesses are designated for executions according to the following guidelines: There are three media witnesses, one print, one broadcast, and one representative from the dominant wire service (Associated Press in this area). The family of the victim is allowed three witnesses. If there is more than one victim, the Corrections' Director may reduce the number of family representatives to one representative for each victim family. Further, if there are more than two victims, the Director may restrict the total number of victims' representatives present in accordance with the space limitation of the Capital Punishment Facility. The law also allows for a minister of the gospel, the counsel for the inmate, the chief law enforcement officer (or designee) and the solicitor (or assistant solicitor) for the county where the offense occurred to be present.

Legislation signed into law on June 8, 1995, provided the option of lethal injection as a means of executing a condemned person. South Carolina was the 25th state to authorize capital punishment by lethal injection. In order to secure and utilize the controlled substances, the Department of Corrections had to be licensed/ certified by the Federal Drug Enforcement Administration, the Department of Health and Environmental Control and the State Board of Pharmacy.

Chemicals necessary to carry out lethal injection are handled, stored and disposed of in accordance with a strict protocol that limits the number of individuals who have access to the chemicals. This protocol had to be approved by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Department of Health and Environmental Control.

The use of an electric chair in South Carolina began in August, 1912. Currently, the electric chair is located in the death chamber of the Capital Punishment Facility. This is the same area that is used for lethal injection. A person convicted of a capital crime can elect to be executed either by lethal injection or electrocution.

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