A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Justice Department: Death sentences reach 30-year low

[JURIST] The US Justice Department is reporting that the number of people sentenced to death in the United States reached a 30-year low in 2003. Last year, 144 inmates in 25 states were given the death penalty, which is not only 24 fewer than in 2002 but less than half the average of 297 between 1994 and 2000. Death penalty opponents feel the report shows the public's wariness of executions in light of how the punishment is administered how it is sometimes employed against wrongfully convicted people. Supporters do not think the numbers reflect any real change in Americans' general attitude toward the death penalty. Read the DOJ press release announcing the new statistics here. Read the full DOJ report here [PDF]. AP has more.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.