Capital Punishment in the United States Explained

In our Explainer series, Fair Punishment Project lawyers help unpackage some of the most complicated issues in the criminal justice system. We break down the problems behind the headlines - like bail, civil asset forfeiture, or the Brady doctrine - so that everyone can understand them. Wherever possible, we try to utilize the stories of those affected by the criminal justice system to show how these laws and principles should work, and how they often fail. We will update our Explainers monthly to keep them current. Read our updated explainer here.
To beat the clock on the expiration of its lethal injection drug supply, this past April, Arkansas tried to execute 8 men over 1 days. The stories told in frantic legal filings and clemency petitions revealed a deeply disturbing picture. Ledell Lee may have had an intellectual disability that rendered him constitutionally ineligible for the death penalty, but he had a spate of bad lawyers who failed to timely present evidence of this claim -…

Philippine President Duterte confirms he killed people as mayor, with no remorse

Philippine President Duterte: "Looking for a confrontation so I could kill."
Philippine President Duterte: "Looking for a confrontation so I could kill."
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte affirmed on Friday that he shot dead three people as mayor, dismissing any uncertainty and displaying no remorse.

“I don’t really know how many bullets from my gun went inside their bodies,” he said. “It happened. I cannot lie about it.”

His confirmation, reported by the Philippine Star, followed boasts to business leaders on Monday that he killed criminal suspects as the Davao City mayor to set a precedent for his police officers.

“I used to do it personally, just to show to the guys that if I can do it, why can’t you?” he said, according to a video posted by the Star.

“I’d go around in Davao with a motorcycle, with a big bike around, and I would just patrol the streets looking for trouble,” he said. “I was really looking for a confrontation, so I could kill.”

The president elaborated on the shootings Friday, calling them incidents with hostage-takers that saved people’s lives.

But his comments already had prompted a warning from U.S. officials and handed critics ammunition to demand his ouster.

The United States on Thursday announced it had deferred a decision to send the Philippines a major economic aid package. White House spokesman Josh Earnest called his remarks “deeply troubling” and “certainly at odds with the Philippine government’s stated commitment to due process and rule of law.”

Sen. Leila de Lima, the president’s most high-profile opponent, told CNN that his admissions amount to “mass murder” and grounds for impeachment.

Duterte, instigator of a bloody drug war during his presidency that has led to the death of more than 3,000 people, is known for his outlandish statements. He has compared himself to Hitler, declared he was not a killer and then threatened to kill officers who disobeyed him, and hinted at his own overuse of a powerful painkiller.

He has mentioned killing criminal suspects before, but his repeated remarks this week are the strongest declarations since he took office in June.

Duterte’s popularity has only increased since then, and it’s unclear what effect his comments will have throughout the island nation. Philippine officials who support the president have tried to play them down.

“The president always resorts to hyperbole,” Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II said on Wednesday, according to the Star. “He always exaggerates just to put his message across.”

Duterte’s confirmation that he had killed challenged such claims.

“I would not have any second thoughts about cutting your head off,” he told the paper on Friday, speaking about drug dealers. “Should I allow it to continue? And be like the Latin American states?

Source: Los Angeles Times, Jessica Meyers, December 16, 2016

⚑ | Report an error, an omission; suggest a story or a new angle to an existing story; submit a piece; 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)

Harris County leads Texas in life without parole sentences as death penalty recedes

Idaho County commissioners take stand against death penalty

Indonesian death penalty laws to be softened to allow reformed prisoners to avoid execution

Texas executes Anthony Allen Shore

USA: Executions, Death Sentences Up Slightly in 2017

Texas executes Dale Devon Scheanette

Death penalty cases of 2017 featured botched executions, claims of innocence, 'flawed' evidence

Virginia Governor commutes death sentence of killer found mentally incompetent to be executed

California: Death penalty sought against Redwood City man accused of sexually assaulting, killing infant

Texas man with scheduled execution uses letters from fellow death row inmates to argue for reprieve