MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Alabama moved closer to allowing death row inmates to be executed with nitrogen gas, a method that has never been used to execute someone.
The House Judiciary Committee approved the bill Wednesday. It now moves to the full House of Representatives for a possible floor vote.
The bill by Sen. Trip Pittman would allow execution by nitrogen hypoxia if lethal injection drugs were unavailable or ruled unconstitutional. The Montrose Republican said he believed the method would be humane.
No state has used nitrogen gas in an execution.
The Death Penalty Information Center said two states — Oklahoma and Mississippi — have voted to conditionally authorize the use of nitrogen gas as a back-up method of execution, but it has never been used.