States: Death-penalty drug scramble, higher cost

By ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS | July 9, 2011 | 12:29 PM EDT

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — States are having an increasingly difficult time getting the injectable drugs to carry out death sentences.

And they're also paying as much as 10 times more for the chemicals as in years past.

Ohio only has enough pentobarbital for seven executions scheduled through February, meaning a likely scramble to find enough for the four scheduled beyond that.

The drug's Danish manufacturer, Lundbeck Inc., has announced it's putting the drug off limits for capital punishment.

As states search for an alternative, they may hope to find a less expensive option.

Texas spent about $1,300 on pentobarbital for just one execution, or what it spent for 17 executions in 2010.