Use of a Death Penalty in California Declines in Key Counties

Use of a genocide chastisement in California has declined in new years. There have been no executions in 6 years, and a series of genocide sentences in 2011 forsaken neatly from prior years.  District Attorney Mark Peterson of Contra Costa County pronounced his bureau tries to be intelligent on crime rather than automatically seeking death. “People here wish us to be tough on crime, yet they wish us to be intelligent on crime,” he said. “Even yet we competence privately trust a suspect deserves a genocide penalty, it doesn’t do us any good to take a tough position if a village isn’t going to support it.  The statistics bear out that a series of genocide chastisement cases have left down over a years,” Peterson said. “It’s been roughly dual years but a genocide outcome and for a ninth largest county in a state, we consider that says a lot.  For a immeasurable infancy of authorised cases, we don’t find a genocide penalty,” he said. A new Field Poll found that while support for a genocide chastisement in California continues, there is also a flourishing bent of electorate to preference life in jail but parole over collateral punishment. Elisabeth Semel, highbrow of law during Berkeley Law School, explained that open opinion can change a preference of prosecutors. She said, “Prosecutors are increasingly peaceful to use a punishment of life but a probability of release and commend that it is some-more excusable to a ubiquitous public. The dwindling recognition of a genocide chastisement … has an change in a decision.” Laurie Levenson, highbrow of law during Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, agreed:The whole effort in both a rapist probity complement and in a village has altered in courtesy to a genocide penalty,” she said. “Prosecutors realize, in a end, it competence not be value it.” 

Two decades ago, Alameda County sent 5 defendants to genocide row.  So distant in 2012, Alameda’s District Attorney, Nancy O’Malley, has not sought a genocide chastisement opposite any defendant. Since holding office, she has sought a genocide chastisement usually once, and that preference was topsy-turvy only before trial. In a same time, there have been some-more than 30 defendants who were authorised for collateral punishment.

(P. Rosynsky, “Prosecutors’ use of a genocide chastisement loss in Alameda County,” Mercury News, Aug 3, 2012). See New Voices and Death Sentencing.