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There are 8 types of death penalty practiced in an official capacity in the modern world. Lethal injection is the practice of injecting a person with a fatal dose of drugs for the express purpose of causing an immediate death. Gas chamber executions are where the prisoner is strapped to a chair inside a sealed gas chamber. The executioner (standing outside of the chamber) pulls a lever dropping potassium cyanide pellets into a vat of sulfuric acid, flooding the chamber with lethal hydrogen cyanide gas. The electric chair is also another common form of capital punishment. The prisoner is shaved, strapped to a chair, and fitted with electrodes attached to conductive sponges–one on the head, one on the leg–creating a direct current. The prisoner is then hooded. The executioner pulls a switch, and 2,000 volts race through the prisoner’s body as the internal body temperature approaches 140 degrees. Executions by firing squad works on strapping the victim to a chair with five sharpshooters aiming at the victim’s heart and all five pulling the trigger. There is also death by hanging. The prisoner stands on trapdoor, and a rope descends from a wooden beam overhead. The rope is fastened around the prisoner’s neck in a “Hangman’s noose,” which tightens when pulled upon. The executioner pulls a lever opening the trapdoor and dropping the prisoner, who ideally dies quickly due to a broken neck. Death by stoning is arguably the world’s oldest form of execution. The prisoner is buried either up to his waist (if male) or up to her shoulders (if female) and then pelted with stones by a crowd of volunteers until obviously battered to death. Death by beheading is probably the most humane form of punishment. The victim is restrained, usually forced to kneel, and the executioner removes the head by way of a sword or knife. Lastly, crucifixion is an ancient method of painful execution in which the condemned person is tied or nailed to a large cross (of various shapes) and left to hang until dead.


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