USA | The Dreadful Failure of Lethal Injection

Editor’s Note: This column is the product of a research collaboration with five Amherst College students, Mattea Denny, Nicolas Graber-Mitchell, Greene Ko, Rose Mroczka, and Lauren Pelosi. America’s death penalty continues to fall out of favor, a well-known fact. When the year started, eight executions were scheduled for February and March in five different states. But all of them are now on hold, and two of the three executions that were set for April already have been halted. While advocacy for the end of the death penalty has played some role, it is the decomposition of the lethal injection paradigm that has truly driven down execution numbers. We have now seen a decade of chaos and experimentation as death penalty jurisdictions tried to find reliable sources of drugs to carry out executions. States rolled out new drugs, but things did not go smoothly. The number of mishaps associated with lethal injection increased substantially. From 2010-2020, an already problematic method of ex

USA | Bill To Repeal Death Penalty Filed In Wyoming Legislature

A bill that would repeal Wyoming's death penalty has been filed in the 2021 session of the Wyoming Legislature.

You can read Senate File 150 at: https://www.wyoleg.gov/Legislation/2021/SF0150

It's being sponsored by Senator(s) Boner, Baldwin, Kost, Landen, Pappas, Rothfuss, and Schuler and Representative(s) Barlow, Burkhart, Connolly, Nicholas, Olsen, Western, and Wilson.

A bill to repeal the death penalty in the 2020 session of the legislature received majority support for introduction by a 37-23 margin in the state House. But even though it got a majority voting in favor, that margin fell three votes short of the 2/3 majority needed for the introduction of a non-budget bill during a budget session.

But because the 2021 session of the legislature is a general session, it will need only a simple majority vote to be introduced.

Wyoming has only executed one person since 1965. Mark Hopkinson was put to death in 1992 for ordering the murder of Jeff Green of Mountain View.

Green was scheduled to testify against Hopkinson for ordering the bombing of the home of Evanston attorney Vincent Vehar of Evanston. Vehar, his wife, and their son were killed in that bombing.

Death penalty opponents argue that it is almost never used in Wyoming and say that simply having the law on the books costs the state money since the public defender's office has to pay to retain an attorney with experience in death penalty cases.

Some death penalty opponents also argue that the state putting someone to death is immoral and amounts to murder.

But supporters of the death penalty say it's the only appropriate penalty for some, especially heinous, crimes. They also say that the threat of the death penalty is a useful tool for prosecutors to get defendants to plead guilty a part of a plea agreement and/or to give up information, such as where bodies of victims may be located.

Source: k2radio.com, Staff, March 2, 2021

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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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