California added 28 prisoners to the nation's most populous death row, while executing none of the inmates imprisoned there during 2010, reports the Los Angeles Times.
The state's death chamber was idle for a fifth year, because of legal challenges of lethal injection practices and a nationwide shortage of the key drug used in the three-injection procedure.
Whether executions will resume in 2011 could be decided early in the new year, when a federal judge is expected to decide if the state's newly revised lethal injection procedures conform with a constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
Texas had the most active death chamber, accounting for 17 of the nation's 46 executions. One of the 17 was David Lee Powell, who fatally shot Austin Police Officer Ralph Ablanedo with an AK-47 in 1978.