In Idaho, death by firing squad may no longer be an option

The 16 men and one woman waiting on Idaho's death row won't face a firing squad under a bill making its way through the Legislature.

Not that they would have anyway.

Idaho has executed only one person in the last 50 years. Keith Wells was put to death in 1994 after he waived his appeals. He died by lethal injection.

But firing squads are still legal in Idaho – the only state that can make that claim. Utah did away with it in 2004, though it may be an option for inmates who selected it earlier. Thirty-six states allow the death penalty.

Idaho law says the state can use a firing squad only if lethal injection is impractical. The Correction Department has a trailer for both lethal injections and firing squads.

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