Presentation on theme: "Death Penalty Katie Schofield John Grib Doug MacDonald."— Presentation transcript:
Death Penalty Katie Schofield John Grib Doug MacDonald
Introduction “Sentence of death upon a person by the state as a punishment for an offence” Crimes punishable by death are called capital crimes or offences Currently 58 countries practice the death penalty
History Used in colonial America for murders and other crimes Karla Faye Tucker: first woman to be executed in Texas Furman vs. Georgia- 1972 ruled all capital punishment unconstitutional. Determined to be “cruel and unusual” 1976- death penalty was reinstated as constitutional By 2009 1,167 prisoners had been executed in the U.S.
Pros Helps deter crime Is an appropriate punishment- serves justice Not using death penalty risks criminals killing again Helps control over population in prisons
Cons Religions believe all killing is wrong Bad way to teach that killing is wrong Biased (those sentenced to death are mostly men, minorities, and people who can’t afford a good defense team Expensive ($2-3.5 million to execute one person) Some argue it isn’t a significant deterrent Possibility of executing innocent people
Interest Groups Amnesty International- working to abolish the death penalty They believe it is a denial of human rights Campaigns to abolish the death penalty Focus on individual cases, supporting repeal efforts Justice for All (prodeathpenalty.com) - pro death penalty Exert social and legislative influence An organization to reform the criminal justice system through private and corporate membership
Evidence/ Statistics Con Costs The California death penalty system costs taxpayers $114 million per year beyond the costs of keeping convicts locked up for life. Taxpayers have paid more than $250 million for each of the state’s executions. (L.A. Times, March 6, 2005) In Kansas, the costs of capital cases are 70% more expensive than comparable non-capital cases, including the costs of incarceration. (Kansas Performance Audit Report, December 2003). In Maryland, an average death penalty case resulting in a death sentence costs approximately $3 million. The eventual costs to Maryland taxpayers for cases pursued 1978-1999 will be $186 million. Five executions have resulted. (Urban Institute 2008).
A comprehensive study of the death penalty in North Carolina found that the odds of receiving a death sentence rose by 3.5 times among those defendants whose victims were white. (Prof. Jack Boger and Dr. Isaac Unah, University of North Carolina, 2001). A study in California found that those who killed whites were over 3 times more likely to be sentenced to death than those who killed blacks and over 4 times more likely than those who killed Latinos. (Pierce & Radelet, Santa Clara Law Review 2005).
Recent Developments Death sentences are at their lowest rates since 1976 Illinois signed an abolition bill of the death penalty in 2011 It looks like Connecticut will be the next state to abolish the death penalty Current Governor Dannel Malloy said he would sign a death penalty bill if passed by the House and Senate. North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue vetoed a bill that would essentiall repeal a former bill that gave death row inmates a new way to argue that their skin color influenced their sentences
Bibliography White, Deborah. "Pros & Cons of the Death Penalty and Capital Punishment." Liberal & Progressive Politics & Perspectives. Web. 15 Dec. 2011.. "Death Penalty." Issues & Controversies On File: n. pag. Issues & Controversies. Facts On File News Services, 1 May 1998. Web. 15 Dec. 2011.. "Abolish the Death Penalty | Amnesty International USA." Amnesty International USA | Protect Human Rights. Web. 15 Dec. 2011.. Justice For All - A Criminal Justice Reform Organization. Web. 15 Dec. 2011..
Bibliography Baynes, Terry. "Study Finds Death Penalty Use in Decline| Reuters." Business & Financial News, Breaking US & International News | Reuters.com. 15 Dec. 2011. Web. 16 Dec. 2011.. "Executing Prisoners From a Financial Viewpoint « Stew!" Stew! Web. 16 Dec. 2011.. "What We Sacrifice on Death Row - SFGate." Featured Articles From The SFGate. 30 June 2008. Web. 16 Dec. 2011..