Connecticut abolishes the Death Penalty

Posted on 26 Apr 2012 at 11:27am

Connecticut is the 5th state in the last five years to repeal the death penalty. Governor Dannel Malloy signed a bill into law on Wednesday abolishing the death penalty in his state.

Governor Dannel Malloy

Governor Dannel Malloy

Dannel Malloy Statement.

“Although it is an historic moment – Connecticut joins 16 other states and the rest of the industrialized world by taking this action – it is a moment for sober reflection, not celebration,”

“In the last 52 years, only two people have been put to death in Connecticut — and both of them volunteered for it,” Malloy said. “Instead, the people of this state pay for appeal after appeal, and then watch time and again as defendants are marched in front of the cameras, giving them a platform of public attention they don’t deserve.”

Capital punishment has been a law in Connecticut since colonial times, but reviews of the law began in 1972 when a Supreme Court decision required great consistency in its application.

Connecticut abolishes the death penalty

The law goes into effect immediately in Connecticut where there are currently 11 people on death row. The law is effective immediately, though prospective in nature, meaning that it would not apply to those already sentenced to death. It replaces the death penalty with life in prison without the possibility of release as the state’s highest form of punishment.

Innocent people are too often sentenced to death. Since 1973, over 138 people have been released from death rows in 26 states because of innocence. Nationally, at least one person is exonerated for every 10 that are executed.

In the last five years, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York and Illinois have repealed the death penalty. California voters will decide the issue in November.