Idaho execution records appeal may be considered next year

Posted at 1:57 PM, Sep 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-20 15:57:48-04

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The Idaho Supreme Court is expected to decide next year whether prison officials must reveal the past source of their execution drugs. Similar debates are raging in courthouses and statehouses across the United States, but it’s not yet clear if rulings elsewhere — including a recent 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision that said there is no First Amendment right to the information — will impact the Idaho fight.

Idaho Department of Correction spokesman Jeff Ray said in a prepared statement that prison officials haven’t yet discussed the 9th U.S. Circuit ruling with the department’s attorneys, and so they haven’t yet formed an opinion on whether the ruling will help their appeal.

ACLU attorney Molly Kafka says she doesn’t think the federal appellate court ruling will negatively impact for her client’s case. She says University of Idaho professor Aliza Cover is suing the state under Idaho’s Public Records law, and says prison officials didn’t follow the state law when they withheld the lethal injection documents.