Victim’s Widow Supports Efforts To Bring Back Firing Squads

By BRADY McCOMBS, The Associated Press

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The widow of a bailiff who was injured during a courthouse shooting three decades ago that led to the assailant being executed by gunfire says she supports Utah’s efforts to bring back the firing squad.

VelDean Kirk witnessed the 2010 firing squad execution of Ronnie Lee Gardner. He was convicted of killing two men and wounding Kirk’s husband, Nick Kirk, during a courthouse escape attempt in 1985 in Salt Lake City.

VelDean Kirk says the firing squad wasn’t inhumane at all.

She shares the opinion of state Rep. Paul Ray. The Republican sponsored a bill passed this week by the Legislature that would reinstate firing squads if the state cannot track down lethal injection drugs.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert has declined to say if he will sign the bill.

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