FEATURED POST

This is America: 9 out of 10 public schools now hold mass shooting drills for students

Image
How "active shooter" drills became normal for a generation of American schoolchildren.
"Are you kids good at running and screaming?" a police officer asks a class of elementary school kids in Akron, Ohio.
His friendly tone then turns serious.
“What I don’t want you to do is hide in the corner if a bad guy comes in the room,” he says. "You gotta get moving."
This training session — shared online by the ALICE Training Institute, a civilian safety training company — reflects the new normal at American public schools. As armed shooters continue their deadly rampages, and while Washington remains stuck on gun control, a new generation of American students have learned to lock and barricade their classroom doors the same way they learn to drop and roll in case of a fire.
The training session is a stark reminder of how American schools have changed since the 1999 Columbine school shooting. School administrators and state lawmakers have realized that a mass shoot…

New Jersey lawmakers want to reinstate death penalty in 'extreme' cases

TRENTON — Two state lawmakers are looking to reverse New Jersey's landmark ban on the death penalty and restore the punishment for serious crimes.

On Monday, Senators Steve Oroho (R-Sussex) and Jeff Van Drew (D-Cape May) introduced a bill that would restore capital punishment in certain murder cases, citing recent terror attacks and fatal ambushes of police officers across the United States as examples of crimes warranting the death penalty.

New Jersey eliminated capital punishment nearly a decade ago, and the measure would have to be approved by the Democrat-controlled state Legislature in order to pass. Previous attempts to roll back the prohibition have failed in recent years, and opponents who shepherded the state death penalty ban into law vowed to fight any effort at repeal.

But its sponsors say recent events merit a fresh look at allowing capital punishment in "extreme" cases.

According to a copy of the bill obtained by NJ Advance Media on Monday, it would restore capital punishment in cases including the murder of a police officer; the murder of a child in commission of a sex crime; deaths caused by an act of terror; killings committed by those who have previously been convicted of murder; and for serial killers.

In a statement announcing the introduction of the bill, Oroho cited the case of Ahmad Khan Rahimi, the man accused of planting bombs in New Jersey and New York in a botched terror plot in September, in advocating for a return to capital punishment.

But even if the bill were currently law, Rahimi himself wouldn't likely face the death penalty, because despite causing widespread panic and injuries, the string of bombings caused no fatalities.

In an interview, the senator said the accused Elizabeth bomber was used as an example.

"There could have been significant fatalities had it actually gone off as planned," Oroho said, adding that he hoped the possibility of capital punishment would serve as a deterrent to future plots.

Sen. Ray Lesniak, a key sponsor of the legislation banning capital punishment in the Garden State, said on Monday that the testimony that led to its passage included the family members of major crime victims who opposed answering killing with more killing.

He also said the specter of wrongful convictions should give pause to anyone looking to reinstate the death penalty.

Van Drew, a Democrat who said he voted against the repeal of the death penalty, said there was "no question that it has to be used very sparingly, only in circumstances where there is clear proof" such as a confession or DNA evidence.

Lesniak said he did not expect the bill to pass.

"We haven't had the death penalty for almost 10 years now, and we're not going to back to the dark ages," Lesniak said.

Ari Rosmarin, the public policy director for the state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, which fought for the death penalty ban, said capital punishment in New Jersey "is in the dustbin of history, where it belongs."

"Lawmakers submit thousands of bills every year that will never see the light of day in an effort to generate a headline," Rosmarin said in an e-mail. "This is one of them."

Source: nj.com, S.P. Sullivan, November 21, 2016

⚑ | Report an error, an omission; suggest a story or a new angle to an existing story; send a submission; recommend a resource; contact the webmaster, contact us: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com.


Opposed to Capital Punishment? Help us keep this blog up and running! DONATE!

Most Viewed (Last 30 Days)

Florida: Emilia Carr resentenced to life in prison

British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford on death row in Bali faces losing last-ditch appeal

Texas: Supreme Court rejects Larry Swearingen's plea for DNA testing

Capital Punishment and Extreme Mental Torture

New Mexico: Swift end for House bill to reinstate death penalty

Iran Executed Three Juvenile Offenders in January

Indiana: Marcus Dansby's death penalty case rescheduled for spring of 2019

20 Minutes to Death: Record of the Last Execution in France

Nevada Inmate Serving 2 Life Terms Dead at Age 83, Decades After SCOTUS Overturned His Death Sentence

Iran: Authorities execute young man in exceptionally cruel circumstances