FEATURED POST

Why Texas’ ‘death penalty capital of the world’ stopped executing people

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Since the Supreme Court legalized capital punishment in 1976, Harris County, Texas, has executed 126 people. That's more executions than every individual state in the union, barring Texas itself.
Harris County's executions account for 23 percent of the 545 people Texas has executed. On the national level, the state alone is responsible for more than a third of the 1,465 people put to death in the United States since 1976.
In 2017, however, the county known as the "death penalty capital of the world" and the "buckle of the American death belt" executed and sentenced to death a remarkable number of people: zero.
This is the first time since 1985 that Harris County did not execute any of its death row inmates, and the third year in a row it did not sentence anyone to capital punishment either.
The remarkable statistic reflects a shift the nation is seeing as a whole.
“The practices that the Harris County District Attorney’s Office is following are also signifi…

Indonesia: Police Tight-Lipped About the Death Penalty in Cyanide Coffee Case

Jessica Kumala Wongso
Jessica Kumala Wongso
Jakarta. Police remained tight-lipped on Wednesday (02/03) about Indonesia's guarantee that murder suspect Jessica Kumala Wongso, a permanent resident of Australian, will not face the death penalty.

The Jakarta Police have sought assistance from the Australian Federal Police in their investigation into the case of Wayan Mirna Salihin, killed in early January from drinking cyanide-spiked coffee at a cafe of a high-end Central Jakarta mall.

Jakarta Police officials last week flew to Australia to discuss the case, and said the Australian government has officially approved their request.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported on Sunday that a spokeswoman for Justice Minister Michael Keenan, who personally signed the request, had told Fairfax Media: "The Indonesian government has given its assurance to the Australian government that the death penalty will not be sought" against Jessica.

Jakarta Police general crimes director Sr. Comr. Krishna Murti, meanwhile, confirmed to Fairfax Media the approval came after Indonesia's Attorney General's Office guaranteed it would not demand the death penalty.

But Jakarta Police chief Insp. Gen. Tito Karnavian, asked on Wednesday about the guarantee, replied: "I will not comment on the matter. It is better to avoid further polemics."

"I have called on my subordinates to just focus on collecting evidence and completing the case dossiers," Tito added.

Police said that Australian authorities will assist in investigating the relationship between Jessica and Mirna, who had studied together at Billy Blue College of Design in Sydney and the Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne.

Police have charged Jessica with premeditated murderer under Article 340 of Indonesia's Criminal Law. If found guilty, she may be sentence to life or at least 20 years in prison.

Source: Jakarta Globe, March 2, 2016

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