Hangings Are Still an Execution Option in WA State - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Hangings Are Still an Execution Option in WA State

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WALLA WALLA, Wash-- The gallows were built at the Washington Penitentiary in the 1930's. Washington uses U.S. Army regulations to calculate the weight of an inmate to determine the amount of drop needed. 

They need to create more than one 1,000 lbs. of force. Witnesses can only see about two-thirds of the body once it has been hung.

"This is the actual trap door and this is where the inmate would stand prior to the execution," said John Anthony, Department of Corrections.

Once the offender is dead the superintedent then announces the time of death. The body of the inmate is released to the Walla Walla County Coroner. The family of the offender is able to take the body.

There have been 75 hangings in the State of Washington and two lethal injections, but no females have ever been executed.