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LA Times, other CA news media sue state to make entire execution process transparent, but critics say it will prevent executions




Pedestrians walk past The Los Angeles Times office building in Los Angeles, California on February 7, 2018, where billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong reached a deal to buy the newspaper from Tronc, its Media Company owners.
Pedestrians walk past The Los Angeles Times office building in Los Angeles, California on February 7, 2018, where billionaire Patrick Soon-Shiong reached a deal to buy the newspaper from Tronc, its Media Company owners.
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

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The LA Times and two San Francisco-based non-profit news organizations are suing to keep executions from resuming in CA.

The Times, NPR-member station KQED and the San Francisco Progressive Media Center want guaranteed full access to executions before they resume. Currently, the state’s planning to allow viewing of the prisoner being executed, but not the backroom where the lethal injection drug is prepared and administered. The state’s also installed curtains to block viewing of the procedure if the person doesn’t die after three doses of the drug.

The news organizations argue openness is essential to determining whether the state is following the law in its executions. Critics say they’re concerned this suit could delay the resumption of executions. Legal challenges have effectively blocked executions here since 2006.

We debate the lawsuit and its repercussions.

Guests:

Ajay Krishnan, a partner with Keker, Van Nest & Peters, which is representing the San Francisco Progressive Media Center, one of the plaintiffs in the suit

Kent Scheidegger, legal director and general counsel at the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, a Sacramento organization dedicated to the interest of victims of crime