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NC court must weigh who decides on execution drugs

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina's Court of Appeals wants a fact-finding lower court to consider whether an appointed state official or a state rulemaking commission should decide how the state executes convicted killers.

The appeals court said Tuesday it wants a trial court to consider the facts around October's decision by Public Safety Secretary Frank Perry to decide on the procedures for lethal injections. The General Assembly changed state law in June to give Gov. Pat McCrory's appointed public safety agency head the power to establish execution procedures.

North Carolina has not carried out any executions since 2006.

The appeals court says facts have changed several times since four killers facing death sentences argued in 2007 that the state's lethal combination of three drugs was unconstitutionally cruel and unusual.

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