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Capital Punishment in the United States Explained

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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 -…

Georgia conservatives want to ‘re-think’ death penalty

Georgia's death chamber
Georgia's death chamber
A group of Georgia conservatives on Thursday will call for the state to re-examine the death penalty but thus far will stop short of calling for a end to state-sanctioned executions.

The group, calling itself Georgia Conservatives Concerned About the Death Penalty, will hold a news conference at 2 p.m. Thursday. 

The organization includes Rep. Brett Harrell, R-Snellville.

“I am skeptical of our government’s ability to implement efficient and effective programs, and so a healthy skepticism of our state’s death penalty is warranted,” Harrell said in a statement. “Many individuals have been wrongly convicted and sentenced to die. Meanwhile, taxpayers are forced to pay for this risky government program, even though it costs far more than life without parole.”

Group spokesman Jon Crane said Thursday’s event “is the state of the process of educating people about the problems with the death penalty and to have a candid discussion from a conservative perspective.”

There is not yet, he said, a call for repeal.

Georgia executed more prisoners in 2016 than any other state in the nation, although it’s been nearly three years since a Georgia defendant was sentenced to death.

Other members of the group meeting Thursday include David Burge, former 5th District Republican Party chair, Richard Lorenc, chief operating officer of Foundations for Economic Freedom, Austin Paul, co-chair of the Mercer University College Republicans, Jennifer Maffessanti, chair of the Atlanta chapter of America’s Future Foundation and Marc Hyden, national coordinator of Conservatives Concerned About the Death Penalty.

Source: ajc.com, Aaron Gould Sheinin, January 17, 2017

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