By KIM CHANDLER
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama has set a January execution date for what could be the nation’s first death sentence carried out by nitrogen gas. Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey on Wednesday announced a Jan 25 execution date for Kenneth Eugene Smith using the new execution method of nitrogen hypoxia. A divided Alabama Supreme Court last week granted the state attorney general’s request to authorize Smith’s execution. Three states have authorized nitrogen hypoxia as an execution method but no state has attempt to used it to carry out a death sentence. Smith was one of two men convicted in the 1988 murder-for-hire slaying of Elizabeth Sennett in northwestern Alabama.