Posts Tagged ‘ capital punishment ’

Capital punishment: Can we cut it out already?

December 22, 2016
posted by

Thomas L Knapp -- photo by Avens O'Brien William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism
by Thomas L Knapp  

"I'm not saying that there aren't crimes worthy of death. In fact, I heartily support the killing of violent criminals in defense of self or others at the scene of the crime. But once a criminal has been apprehended, disarmed and caged, killing him or her isn't self-defense any more. Execution is just the gratuitous, vengeful taking of a human life for public show. And no matter how much lipstick the practice's supporters put on the pig to try and turn it into something else, that's all it will ever be. Capital punishment is also completely incompatible with the notions of 'limited government' that most libertarians and some conservatives claim to support, not to mention the basic civil liberties that both libertarians and liberals publicly sustain." (12/21/16)

http://thegarrisoncenter.org/archives/8824  

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Death penalty: When stupid is an advantage

December 15, 2016
posted by

Timothy J. Taylor Authority!
by Timothy J Taylor  

"When it comes to the death penalty in the United States of America did you know that if you're a murderer it pays dividends to be stupid? That's right. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that subjecting an intellectually disabled murderer to the death penalty amounts to cruel and unusual punishment in violation of the Eighth Amendment in the Bill of Rights. Frying an intellectually abled murderer to death is OK, no problem, but the lives of stupid murderers must be spared." (12/15/16)

http://authoritycon.blogspot.com/2016/12/death-penalty-when-stupid-is-advantage.html  

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SCOTUS to Alabama regime: Hold off on killing prisoner

December 8, 2016
posted by

Montgomery Advertiser    

"The United States Supreme Court has issued a temporary stay in the execution of Ronald Smith. Department of Corrections Spokesman Bob Horton said ADOC Commissioner Jeff Dunn received official notice from the higher court, stating it would need more time to review Smith's appeal and issue an order. ... Twenty one years ago a Madison County jury found Smith guilty of capital murder and sentenced him to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Two months later, the judge overrode their decision and gave him death. He is set to for execution at the William C. Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore. Alabama is the last state in the country that allows a judge to override a jury’s recommended sentence." (12/08/16)

http://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com/story/news/crime/2016/12/08/man-sentenced-life-awaits-execution/95140712/  

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GA: State employees kill ninth prisoner this year

December 7, 2016
posted by

New York Daily News    

"With the execution Tuesday of a man convicted of killing his father-in-law, Georgia has put to death nine inmates this year -- more than any other state. William Sallie's time of death was 10:05 p.m., after an injection of compounded barbiturate pentobarbital at the state prison in Jackson, Warden Eric Sellers told witnesses. Sallie, 50, was convicted of murder in the March 1990 shooting death of John Lee Moore in rural south Georgia." (12/07/16)

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/ga-executes-ninth-inmate-2016-article-1.2901307  

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Saudi Arabia: Regime sentences 15 people to death for spying for Iran

December 6, 2016
posted by

The Guardian The Guardian [UK]    

"A Saudi court has sentenced 15 people to death for spying for Iran, Saudi-owned media has reported, in a ruling that could further stoke tension between the two rival powers. The specialised criminal court in Riyadh sentenced 15 other suspects to prison terms ranging from six months to 25 years, and acquitted two, the Arabic-language al-Riyadh newspaper reported. The suspects -- 30 Saudi Shia Muslims, one Iranian and an Afghan -- were detained in 2013 on charges of spying for Iran and went on trial in February. The rulings are subject to appeal, and death sentences must go to the king for ratification." (12/06/16)

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/dec/06/saudi-arabia-sentences-15-people-to-death-for-spying-for-iran  

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Voters in California, Nebraska, Oklahoma support having state employees kill prisoners

November 9, 2016
posted by

Newsy    

"In California, voters considered dueling death penalty propositions. Proposition 62 would have ended the death penalty, making life in prison without parole the toughest sentence in the state. Instead, voters approved Proposition 66, which keeps the death penalty and tries to shorten the time between conviction and execution by putting a time limit on the appeals process. ... Oklahoma voters decided to add the death penalty to the state's constitution and declare it's not cruel and unusual punishment. This allows the state to use any method of execution that's not prohibited by the U.S. Constitution. ... Nebraska lawmakers banned the death penalty in 2015. Voters disagreed and repealed that law, so the death penalty will be back." (11/09/16)

http://www.newsy.com/videos/california-nebraska-voted-against-banning-the-death-penalty/  

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Saudi Arabia: Regime kills prince convicted of murder

October 20, 2016
posted by

Newsweek    

"A Saudi prince was executed in Riyadh on Tuesday after a court found him guilty of shooting dead a fellow Saudi, official media reported, in a rare example of a ruling family member subjected to the death penalty. Prince Turki bin Saud al-Kabir had pleaded guilty to shooting Adel al-Mohaimeed after a brawl, the ministry of interior said in a statement on state news agency SPA. It did not say how the prince was killed. Most people executed in the kingdom are beheaded with a sword. Members of Saudi Arabia's ruling family are only rarely known to have been executed. One of the most prominent cases was Faisal bin Musaid al Saud, who assassinated his uncle, King Faisal, in 1975." (10/19/16)

http://www.newsweek.com/saudi-arabia-executes-prince-convicted-murder-511432  

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China: Official sentenced to death for taking “huge amount of bribes”

October 10, 2016
posted by

New York Daily News    

"A former Chinese provincial Communist Party boss was sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve Sunday as part of the country's ongoing crackdown on corruption at all levels. The Anyang City Intermediate People's Court in Henan Province said Bai Enpei was found guilty of taking 'a huge amount of bribes' and possessing a large amount of income from unidentified sources. ... Suspended death sentences in China are usually reverted to life imprisonment after two years with good behavior." (10/09/16)

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/chinese-official-sentenced-death-bribes-article-1.2824096  

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Iraq: Regime employees kill 36

August 22, 2016
posted by

USA Today USA Today    

"Iraq has hanged 36 Islamic State militants convicted of involvement in the June 2014 massacre of hundreds of Iraqi military recruits near Tikrit, government officials said. The victims, among thousands of unarmed Air Force recruits at Camp Speicher military base, were Shiites and non-Muslims who were tied up and driven from the camp. They were taken to multiple locations, shot and their bodies were dumped in trenches or rivers. Sunnis apparently were spared. The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack and released video of some killings." (08/21/16)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/08/21/iraq-islamic-state-executions/89072146/  

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NM: Martinez will ask legislator to start letting state employees kill prisoners again

August 17, 2016
posted by

Albuquerque Journal    

"In the wake the recent shooting death of a Hatch police officer, Gov. Susana Martinez will push during next year's legislative session to reinstate New Mexico's death penalty for child killers and those convicted of murdering law enforcement officers. Martinez, a former prosecutor, backed legislation to reimpose the death penalty immediately after taking office in 2011, but the proposal stalled that year in the Democratic-controlled Legislature and the issue has not been part of the governor’s agenda in recent years." [editor's note: I wonder if she's angling for AG in a Trump administration or just polishing her tough on crime credentials for a 2020 run if Trump loses? - TLK] (08/17/16)

http://www.abqjournal.com/828154/gov-martinez-will-push-to-reinstate-nm-death-penalty.html?  

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TX: Regime employees prepare to kill a man who killed no one

August 11, 2016
posted by

Raw Story Raw Story    

"A small-town Texan, Danny Wood is quick to tell you he’s not against the death penalty -- but he doesn’t think the state should execute his son. After all, Jeff Wood never killed anyone. Early on Jan. 2, 1996, Jeff Wood sat in a truck outside a Kerrville gas station while his friend Daniel Reneau went inside to steal a safe said to be full from the holiday weekend, according to court documents. When the clerk, Kriss Keeran, didn’t comply or respond to threats, Reneau shot him dead. Reneau was sentenced to death and executed in 2002. On Aug. 24, Wood’s own execution is scheduled. He was sentenced to death under Texas’ felony murder statute, commonly known as the law of parties, which holds that anyone involved in a crime resulting in death is equally responsible, even if they weren’t directly involved in the actual killing. Activists and Wood’s lawyers are scrambling to try to stop his execution." (08/11/16)

http://www.rawstory.com/2016/08/texas-prepares-to-execute-a-man-who-killed-no-one  

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Turkey: Erdogan backs return to premeditated state killing of prisoners at Istanbul rally

August 8, 2016
posted by

BBC News BBC News [UK state media]    

"Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has told a vast rally in Istanbul that he would approve the return of the death penalty if it was backed by parliament and the public. He was speaking to at least a crowd of at least a million who had gathered in Turkey's biggest city. The rally followed last month's failed military coup. Mr Erdogan also said the state would be cleansed of all supporters of the US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen. The cleric is blamed by the Turkish government for the attempted uprising. He denies any involvement." (08/08/16)

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-37003819  

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Jeff Wood didn’t kill anyone, but Texas is about to execute him anyway

August 2, 2016
posted by

The Intercept The Intercept
by Jordan Smith  

"It was just after 4pm on July 23 and the temperature was firmly in the triple digits by the time 20-year-old Nick Been took to the microphone set up outside the iron gates that surround the Texas governor's mansion in Austin. A small crowd of anti-death penalty activists had joined Been's friends and family on the sunny street just steps from the state’s red granite Capitol. They were there to call for Gov. Greg Abbott to halt the impending execution of Been's uncle, Jeff Wood, who is scheduled to die on August 24, just five days after his 43rd birthday, for a crime that everyone, including prosecutors, admits he did not commit." (08/02/16)

https://theintercept.com/2016/08/02/jeff-wood-didnt-kill-anyone-but-texas-is-about-to-execute-him-anyway/  

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Roof’s attorneys seek to have federal death penalty ruled unconstitutional

August 2, 2016
posted by

Carlisle Sentinel    

"Attorneys for Dylann Roof, the white man charged with killing nine black parishioners at a South Carolina church, want a federal judge to rule the death penalty unconstitutional and allow their client to plead guilty and serve life in prison. Lawyers for 22-year-old Dylan Roof filed the motion on Monday saying a flawed process of sitting juries willing to recommend the death penalty violates the rights of both potential jurors and defendants. The government is seeking the death penalty against Roof who is charged with hate crimes and other counts in the June 2015 shootings at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston." (08/02/16)

http://cumberlink.com/news/national/roof-attorneys-want-death-penalty-ruled-unconstitutional/article_147e1b89-72b5-50ef-99b7-dacf10f2c5b7.html  

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Germany: Revived death penalty in Turkey would end EU talks

July 18, 2016
posted by

Bloomberg    

"Germany warned Turkey that reinstating the death penalty after the coup attempt against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would end his country's bid to join the European Union. 'A country that has the death penalty cannot be a member of the European Union -- and the introduction of the death penalty in Turkey would mean the end of accession talks,' Steffen Seibert, Chancellor Angela Merkel's chief spokesman, told reporters in Berlin on Monday. Erdogan's supporters revived calls to reintroduce capital punishment as the president pledges to reshape Turkey after thwarting the uprising by elements of the army." (07/18/16)

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-07-18/revived-death-penalty-in-turkey-would-end-eu-talks-germany-says  

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Grandstanding prosecutor: Let South Carolina try Roof first so that I can have him killed

July 13, 2016
posted by

Charleston Post and Courier    

"A federal trial for the man charged in the slayings of nine black church members is unlikely to deliver the death penalty and he should be tried in state court first, where there is a better chance for capital punishment, a prosecutor said. ... 'The federal government's track record suggests an unwillingness to carry out a death sentence,' prosecutor Scarlett Wilson wrote in court documents filed late Tuesday. She renewed her request that judges in the state and federal cases get together and set a trial schedule that lets South Carolina try Roof first." (07/13/16)

http://www.postandcourier.com/20160713/160719764/solicitor-justice-unlikely-in-federal-church-slayings-trial-hearing-today  

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New SCOTUS cases may narrow death penalty

June 9, 2016
posted by

Christian Science Monitor Christian Science Monitor    

"For a few minutes Monday morning the future of the death penalty in America looked in dire straits. The US Supreme Court announced that it would hear two capital cases from Texas next term, cases that would question the constitutionality of the practice on multiple levels, including how capital defendants are sentenced and how they are treated on death row. But the court quickly scaled back expectations that the death penalty itself was on the line by clarifying that they will not be considering one key question: whether decades-long stays on death row violate the Eighth Amendment. The court will instead focus on two narrow questions about what kind of defendants should be sentenced to death." (06/07/16)

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Justice/2016/0607/New-Supreme-Court-cases-may-narrow-death-penalty  

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SCOTUS turns down death penalty case

May 31, 2016
posted by

The Washington Post Washington Post    

"The Supreme Court on Monday turned down a Louisiana murderer's request that the justices take his case to decide whether the death penalty is unconstitutional. Lamondre Tucker drew noted support only from the two justices who previously have said the court should consider the question -- Stephen G. Breyer and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Tucker 'may well have received the death penalty not because of the comparative egregiousness of his crime, but because of an aribtrary feature of his case, namely, geography,' Breyer wrote. Tucker was convinced of killing his pregnant girlfriend in 2008 and was sentenced to death in Caddo Parish, which Breyer said 'imposes almost half the death sentences in Louisiana, even though it accounts for only 5 percent of the state's population and 5 percent of its homicides,' Breyer wrote." (05/31/16)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/supreme-court-turns-down-death-penalty-case/2016/05/31/20cf849c-2735-11e6-b989-4e5479715b54_story.html  

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SCOTUS orders new trial for black death row inmate convicted by all-white jury

May 23, 2016
posted by

National Public Radio [US state media]    

"The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that a black Georgia man convicted of murder by an all-white jury should have a new trial because the prosecution deliberately excluded African-Americans from the jury based on their race. The court's decision reversed as 'clearly erroneous' an earlier ruling by the Georgia Supreme Court, which had said the defendant had not proved racial discrimination in the selection of his jury. It's been nearly 30 years since the U.S. Supreme Court set new rules to counter race discrimination in the seating of juries. But in some jurisdictions, the propensity to bar non-white jurors has persisted, even in capital cases such as the one against Timothy Foster, a black man accused of killing an elderly white woman." (05/23/16)

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/05/23/479166026/supreme-court-orders-new-trial-for-black-death-row-inmate-convicted-by-all-white  

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FL: Group urges Supreme Court to throw out death sentences

May 4, 2016
posted by

SaintPetersBlog    

"With the fate of hundreds of Florida death row inmates in limbo, a group of former top judges and legal officials called on the state Supreme Court to impose life sentences on nearly 400 people now awaiting execution. ... After the U.S. Supreme Court declared Florida's death sentencing law unconstitutional in January, the state's high court halted two executions and state legislators overhauled the way convicted killers can be sentenced to death. But the Florida Supreme Court still hasn't decided what should happen to the 389 people on death row under the previous sentencing scheme." (05/04/16)

http://saintpetersblog.com/floridas-high-court-urged-throw-death-sentences/  

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US premeditated state prisoner killings down in 2015, but nation remains in global top five

April 6, 2016
posted by

Chicago Tribune Chicago Tribune    

"Capital punishment continued its steady decline in the United States last year, with death sentences and executions dropping to levels unseen for decades. But despite this shift, the country remains among the world's leaders in the death penalty, putting more inmates to death in 2015 than most other nations. ... The Amnesty report had harsh words for the executions that were carried out in the United States, saying that the country 'continued to use the death penalty in ways that contravene international law and standards, including on people with mental and intellectual disabilities.'" (04/06/16)

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/ct-us-executions-20160406-story.html  

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TX: State employees kill prisoner convicted of killing trespassing tax parasite

March 22, 2016
posted by

Yahoo! News Yahoo! News    

"A Texas man on death row for killing a worker [sic] who was on his property looking for city code violations was [killed be state employees] Tuesday. Adam Ward was given a lethal injection for shooting and killing Michael Walker, a code enforcement officer who was taking photos of junk piled outside the Ward family home in Commerce, about 65 miles northeast of Dallas. ... Ward became the ninth convicted killer [premeditatedly killed by state employees] this year nationally and the fifth in Texas, which [has state employees kill prisoners] more than any other state." (03/22/16)

https://www.yahoo.com/news/high-court-weighs-whether-spare-texas-man-execution-054119076.html  

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SCOTUS refuses to hear challenge to Alabama’s rules for having state employees kill prisoners

March 21, 2016
posted by

ABC 33/40    

"Today the U.S. Supreme Court denied a petition for certiorari in Clayton Shanklin v. Alabama, in which a convicted murderer argued that Alabama's capital sentencing scheme was unconstitutional under the Court's recent decision in Hurst v. Florida. This was the first Alabama death penalty appeal to reach the Supreme Court on this issue since Hurst was decided on January 12, 2016. ... Shanklin was convicted of capital murder and attempted murder, which he committed during a home-invasion robbery in 2009 in Cordova. A jury in Walker County Circuit Court recommended that Shanklin be sentenced to life-without-parole. But, under Alabama law, the judge sentenced Shanklin to death because of his long criminal history and the nature and circumstances of his crime." (03/21/16)

http://abc3340.com/news/local/us-supreme-court-refuses-to-hear-sentencing-challenge  

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OH: Court says state employees can try a second time to kill inmate

March 16, 2016
posted by

CBS News CBS News    

"Ohio can try again to put to death a condemned killer whose 2009 botched execution was called off after two hours, the state's Supreme Court said Wednesday. The court by a 4-3 vote rejected arguments by death row inmate Romell Broom, whose attorneys said giving the state prisons agency a second chance would amount to cruel and unusual punishment and double jeopardy. ... Broom was sentenced to die for raping and killing 14-year-old Tryna Middleton after abducting her in Cleveland in 1984 as she walked home from a Friday night football game with two friends. His 2009 execution was stopped by then-Gov. Ted Strickland after an execution team tried for two hours to find a suitable vein. Broom has said he was stuck with needles at least 18 times, with pain so intense he cried and screamed. An hour into the execution, the Department of Rehabilitation and Correction recruited a part-time prison doctor with no experience or training with executions to try -- again, unsuccessfully -- to find a vein." (03/16/16)

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/romell-broom-court-inmate-who-survived-09-execution-can-be-put-to-death/  

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Pope calls for worldwide abolition of death penalty

February 21, 2016
posted by

Reuters    

"Pope Francis on Sunday called for the worldwide abolition of the death penalty, saying the commandment 'You shall not kill' was absolute and equally valid for the guilty as for the innocent. Using some of his strongest words ever against capital punishment, he also called on Catholic politicians worldwide to make 'a courageous and exemplary gesture' by seeking a moratorium on executions during the Church's current Holy Year, which ends in November." (02/21/16)

http://in.reuters.com/article/pope-capitalpunishment-idINKCN0VU0HR  

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