California death penalty moratorium blocked

[JURIST] A California [JURIST news archive] proposal for a two-year death penalty [JURIST news archive] moratorium hit a permanent stumbling block in the California Assembly's Appropriations Committee Thursday. The moratorium proposal [PDF text] intended to suspend executions in California until a commission completed a review of California's death penalty, including an analysis of any condemned inmates who were wrongly convicted. Democratic Assemblyman Paul Koretz, the bill's sponsor, said he hopes to revive the effort in another proposal later this year. A number of DNA tests have exonerated death row inmates in recent years, prompting Illinois, and more recently New Jersey [JURIST report], to suspend executions. New Jersey became the first state to impose a moratorium via legislation last week, placing a moratorium on executions that will last until 60 days after a special commission releases its findings. California has approximately 650 inmates on death row, the largest of any state, and has exonerated six people with DNA tests. The state recently executed two inmates: Clarence Ray Allen [JURIST report], the oldest person on death row, and Stanley Tookie Williams [JURIST report], the infamous Crips gang co-founder. AP has more. The LA Times has local coverage.



 

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