Idaho Gov. Signs Bill Legalizing Execution by Firing Squad

This June 18, 2010, file photo shows the firing squad execution chamber at the Utah State
Trent Nelson/Salt Lake Tribune via AP, Pool, File

Idaho Gov. Brad Little (R) signed legislation over the weekend legalizing the use of firing squads to carry out execution sentences in his state.

On the morning of Friday, March 24, 2023, Breitbart News reported Idaho was on the cusp of becoming the fifth state to legalize execution by firing squad, and later that day Little signed the legislation.

The Associated Press noted that Idaho turned to firing squads because the companies that make drugs for lethal injections do not want their products used in executions. This has made the drugs hard to acquire and “one Idaho death row inmate has already had his execution postponed repeatedly because of drug scarcity.”

Some states are looking to electric chairs in the absence of lethal drugs, but Idaho, Mississippi, Utah, Oklahoma, and South Carolina, have all legalized firing squads as an option.

File/17 January, 1977/Point of the Mountain, Utah: Newsmen looking at and taking photos of the chair in which Gary Gilmore sat when facing the firing squad here. Draped over that back of the chair is the corduroy material hood which Gilmore wore during the execution. Upper right on the chair back are the bullet holes. The chair is surrounded with sandbags. (Getty)

Upon signing the legislation, Gov. Little had a transmittal letter hand delivered to Idaho House Speaker Mike Moyle (R).

The letter reaffirmed Little’s support for the death penalty for individuals who commit “heinous crimes” while also stressing Little’s concern that death squads be used in a such way that “[minimizes] stress on corrections personnel.”

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio and a Turning Point USA Ambassador. AWR Hawkins holds a Ph.D. in Military History, with a focus on the Vietnam War (brown water navy), U.S. Navy since Inception, the Civil War, and Early Modern Europe. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. You can sign up to get Down Range at Reach him directly at


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