Maryland High Court Calls Halt to Executions

Started by Anja, December 20, 2006, 03:02:33 PM

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Anja

Maryland High Court Calls Halt to Executions (for the pro's:  :P :P :P)
Lethal Injection Blocked Over Procedural Issue

By Eric Rich and John Wagner
Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, December 20, 2006; Page B01

Maryland's highest court ruled yesterday that the state's procedure for carrying out executions was adopted improperly, a defect that the court said must be addressed before any more condemned inmates are put to death.

The unanimous ruling by the Court of Appeals moved the debate squarely into the political realm, where Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) or his Democratic successor, Martin O'Malley, must act if executions are to resume.

Last night, O'Malley, who takes office Jan. 17, called on Ehrlich to leave the issue for the incoming administration. "I'm sure all of this will spark a renewed debate as to whether all of the money we spend prosecuting death penalty cases might be better spent fighting violent crime and saving lives," O'Malley said.

An Ehrlich aide said the administration was reviewing the matter and had not decided how to proceed.

Because of the effort required to correct the defect identified by the court, many death penalty opponents said they expect that O'Malley would ultimately chart the state's course.

O'Malley has taken a nuanced position on the issue, saying that he is personally opposed to the death penalty but that his opposition would not prevent him from signing a death warrant. "I'm very much in favor of life without parole for people that shoot, maim and kill others time and time again," he said yesterday.

Cindy Boersma, legislative director for the American Civil Liberties Union in Maryland, one of several plaintiffs in the case, said of the situation: "This is a perfect opportunity for the O'Malley administration to conclude that it's not possible to have capital punishment in Maryland consistent with standards of human dignity."

In ordering that the execution of Vernon L. Evans be postponed indefinitely, the Court of Appeals did not find that the three-drug cocktail that Maryland uses in lethal injections is unconstitutionally cruel.

Rather, the court held that the process was developed by state prison authorities without legislative oversight and thus was not adopted, as regulations are supposed to be, in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act.

The court offered two paths to remedy the defect. The procedure could be adopted properly, a step that would require action by the secretary of public safety, a gubernatorial appointee, and a legislative panel; or the legislature could exempt the execution protocol from the requirements of the act.

A. Stephen Hut Jr., the attorney who argued the case in May on Evans's behalf, said yesterday that mounting scrutiny over the pain lethal injection may cause should have a sobering effect on either process.

"I think all of the botched processes in other states become highly relevant," he said.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content...ailarticle

antionette

Taking each state one by one.... that is how the death penalty with be abolished.  Can't wait until Texas comes on board.... :)

ScoopD (aka: Pam)

oh please...  Texas has it almost at perfection...  The only way they could improve is if they schedule more frequently, too many have been sitting around far too long.

You Anti's enjoy your moments right now, thing is this: they are ONLY moratoriums, the problems will be fixed and executions will resume. 
<br /><br />If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. -Thomas Paine<br /><br />My reason for supporting capital punishment: My cousin 16 yr. old Amanda Greenwell was murdered in March of 2004 at the hands of serial killer Jeremy Bryan Jones.

antionette


oh please...  Texas has it almost at perfection...  The only way they could improve is if they schedule more frequently, too many have been sitting around far too long.

You Anti's enjoy your moments right now, thing is this: they are ONLY moratoriums, the problems will be fixed and executions will resume. 


Wanna bet?   :-*

Anja


oh please...  Texas has it almost at perfection...  The only way they could improve is if they schedule more frequently, too many have been sitting around far too long.

You Anti's enjoy your moments right now, thing is this: they are ONLY moratoriums, the problems will be fixed and executions will resume. 


Problem is... how do you want to fix the problem... if you give them 2 drugs there can always something go wrong due to human error. If you only want to give them Sodium Thiopenthal then they will slowly die, like within an hour or longer... I don't think you can "fix" the problem...

ScoopD (aka: Pam)

Texas does not seem to have a problem, other states should adopt their procedure and policy.

Bring back the chair, hanging, gas chamber etc.
<br /><br />If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. -Thomas Paine<br /><br />My reason for supporting capital punishment: My cousin 16 yr. old Amanda Greenwell was murdered in March of 2004 at the hands of serial killer Jeremy Bryan Jones.

Mildred

Ah who cares.  Good thing to keep in mind, pros, the longer they are alive..the more chances they have big bubba smackin dat ass!  The more chances they have of pissing off other inmates and getting the shit kicked out of them. 

Plus, the more we can let them know how much we hate them and want big bubba to smack that ass!

antionette


Ah who cares.  Good thing to keep in mind, pros, the longer they are alive..the more chances they have big bubba smackin dat ass!  The more chances they have of pissing off other inmates and getting the shit kicked out of them. 

Plus, the more we can let them know how much we hate them and want big bubba to smack that ass!


Why Sin... I think you are coming over to our side!!!!! :-*

Mildred



Ah who cares.  Good thing to keep in mind, pros, the longer they are alive..the more chances they have big bubba smackin dat ass!  The more chances they have of pissing off other inmates and getting the shit kicked out of them. 

Plus, the more we can let them know how much we hate them and want big bubba to smack that ass!


Why Sin... I think you are coming over to our side!!!!! :-*


Wake up, hun.  You are sleeping.

ScoopD (aka: Pam)

I'm giving ya'll both + point for this one...    too funny.  ;D
<br /><br />If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace. -Thomas Paine<br /><br />My reason for supporting capital punishment: My cousin 16 yr. old Amanda Greenwell was murdered in March of 2004 at the hands of serial killer Jeremy Bryan Jones.

antionette




Ah who cares.  Good thing to keep in mind, pros, the longer they are alive..the more chances they have big bubba smackin dat ass!  The more chances they have of pissing off other inmates and getting the shit kicked out of them. 

Plus, the more we can let them know how much we hate them and want big bubba to smack that ass!


Why Sin... I think you are coming over to our side!!!!! :-*


Wake up, hun.  You are sleeping.


;D :P

Michael

Wesley E. Baker. Tyrone Delano Gilliam. Flint Gregory Hunt. Steven Howard Oken. John Frederick Thanos.

These five people were violent killers who had something else in common: All were put to death by Maryland after the state resumed capital punishment in 1978.

Today five people wait on Death Row and the clock could soon be reset -- or stopped for good.

An appeals court ordered a moratorium on executions almost two years ago for a review of the lethal injection method, which some argue is unconstitutional. In the interim, the Maryland legislature was unsuccessful in two tries to repeal the death penalty.

Next month, a state commission that has been studying the gut-wrenching issue is scheduled to release new death-penalty recommendations.

Based on a preliminary vote taken earlier this month, the Maryland Commission on Capital Punishment is likely to ask the state legislature to abolish the death penalty in favor of a life sentence, without the possibility of release, for the worst criminals.

The commission said it found disparities in the way death-penalty cases are handled in judicial systems, and along racial lines. The advisory group also said the threat of a death sentence did not deter criminals from killing someone.

The questions of race, fairness, innocence, deterrence, the impact on the families of victims, cost and morality have long enveloped the debate over the death penalty, which can be imposed in 38 states and is available to federal prosecutors for certain crimes.

On the issue of race, here are the current basic facts: Four of the five people awaiting execution are black, one is white. Of the 42 convicts executed by 10 states in 2007, federal reports reveal 28 were white and 14 were black.

Statistics have long confirmed that a death sentence is more expensive. In a Maryland case where prosecutors could have sought death, but did not, costs for prosecution, defense and incarceration were estimated at $1.1 million, according to a study by the Justice Policy Center at the Urban Institute. The price for a capital case in which the death penalty was sought rises to at least $1.8 million -- and as much as $3 million, if an execution occurs, the study estimated.

Will the possibility of death cause a potential killer to pause? One recent University of Pennsylvania study found it is impossible to answer that question.

Families of victims have testified that killing the killer often doesn't bring closure.

Perhaps the deepest concern is that the justice system is not infallible, that innocent people will be put to death, even with improvements in technology and more reliable test results.

One of the 23 members of Maryland commission is Kirk Noble Bloodsworth, a former Marine who was convicted of raping and murdering a 9-year-old and sentenced to death in 1984. After spending nine years in prison, including two on Death Row, he was exonerated after it was revealed genetic evidence found at the crime scene didn't match his DNA.

Bloodsworth is living proof that mistakes happen and there can be significant ambiguity in evidence at trial.

Unlike a life sentence without possibility of parole, a death sentence can't be reversed if new evidence becomes available after the sentence is carried out.

Prison is seldom a pleasant place. For "the worst of the worst" criminals, such as child and police killers, some argue that the fact they will die in their isolation cells is a harsher punishment than death by needle.

Gov. Martin O'Malley is correct in his assertion that the ultimate penalty is "inherently unjust." In a civil society, one death of an innocent person is one too many. It's time to remove the death penalty from Maryland's books.


http://www.gazette.net/stories/11272008/prinedi154037_32470.shtml
I´m not sure if there´s a hell, but I believe in executed murderers.

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