Idaho prison officials claim their efforts to protect the identity of execution team members trump any reason to allow witnesses view lethal injections from start to finish.
Preserving the anonymity of executioners is just one of the arguments cited Tuesday by Idaho prison officials in a lawsuit filed by news organizations challenging the state’s execution policy.
Earlier this month, more than a dozen Idaho news groups asked a federal judge to force Idaho to allow media and other witnesses to view executions in their entirety. Currently, witnesses are blocked from the early stages, including insertion of IV needles into the condemned inmate.
State officials say expanding access heightens the risk of identifying the execution team, which could create stress, anxiety and complicate efforts to perform their duties flawlessly. (AP)