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America Is Stuck With the Death Penalty for (At Least) a Generation

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With Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement, the national fight to abolish capital punishment will have to go local.
When the Supreme Court revived capital punishment in 1976, just four years after de facto abolishing it, the justices effectively took ownership of the American death penalty and all its outcomes. They have spent the decades since then setting its legal and constitutional parameters, supervising its general implementation, sanctioning its use in specific cases, and brushing aside concerns about its many flaws.
That unusual role in the American legal system is about to change. With Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement from the court this summer, the Supreme Court will lose a heterodox jurist whose willingness to cross ideological divides made him the deciding factor in many legal battles. In cases involving the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment, his judgment often meant the difference between life and death for hundreds of death-row pr…

China: Man sentenced to death for mass nursing home killing

April 1, 2016: A man who attacked a nursing home, killing nine people and injuring nine others in 2015, was sentenced to death by a court in central China's Hunan Province.

Luo Renchu, a nursing worker, randomly attacked elderly people and staff at the nursing home after a dispute with the owner over unpaid wages, according to the ruling of the Intermediate People's Court of Loudi City.

The attack happened on Feb. 19, 2015, the Spring Festival, at Aixin Nursing Home, Yongfeng Township, Shuangfeng County. 

The nursing home owed Luo and his wife, also a nursing worker, unpaid wages of about 40,000 yuan (6,200 U.S. dollars).

Luo had asked for the wages many times and had been promised 10,000 yuan before Spring Festival but only received 6,000 yuan.

Luo sought revenge by attacking the home's residents with a brick as they slept in the belief it would cause the owners to lose money. 

He was arrested two days later. 

Sources: Xinhua News Agency, Hands Off Cain, April 1, 2016

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