COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio says it will use a never-tried dose of two drugs injected intravenously to put to death an inmate who raped and killed a pregnant woman.

The approach has never been used in a U.S. execution.

The decision obtained by The Associated Press on Tuesday means the state was unable to obtain an unregulated batch of pentobarbital. That's the drug Ohio used until its manufacturer put it off limits for executions.

The state says it will instead use a combination of the sedative midazolam and the painkiller hydromorphone in the Jan. 16 execution of Dennis McGuire, 51.

The drugs were part of a backup method in which they would be injected into muscle if the intravenous method failed.

Because the pentobarbital is unavailable, the two-drug combination will be injected into McGuire's veins.

On February 11, 1989, McGuire, then 29, murdered a pregnant woman, Joy Stewart, 22, in a wooded area.

Stewart had met McGuire that day when he was performing work on her friend's house. McGuire raped Ms. Stewart, choked her and stabbed her in the neck and shoulder.

While in jail for an unrelated kidnapping charge, McGuire attempted to bargain with police by implicating his relative as the rapist-murderer, but police suspected McGuire because he knew significant facts that were not disclosed to the public.

DNA testing, conducted in 1992 and again in 2002 during federal appeals, identified McGuire



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