Death Penalty

1056 ABA Journal Death Penalty articles.

Washington Supreme Court strikes down state death penalty as racially biased
The Washington Supreme Court has ruled the state’s death penalty violates the state constitution because it is imposed in an arbitrary and racially biased manner.
Supreme Court considers whether prisoner with dementia and no memory of his crime should be executed
The Supreme Court granted full review of Alabama death row prisoner Vernon Madison’s case. The issue is whether the Eighth Amendment and relevant court precedents permit a state to execute someone who whose mental disability leaves him without memory of his commission of the capital offense, and whether evolving standards of decency bar the execution of a prisoner whose competency has been compromised by vascular dementia and multiple strokes.
Would Pope’s rejection of death penalty have changed Scalia’s opinion?
Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago told American Bar Association members that if Justice Antonin Scalia, a devout Catholic, had lived to hear the pope’s death penalty proclamation, he might have reconsidered his position supporting capital punishment.
Chemerinsky: Another blockbuster Supreme Court term is ahead

At this point, review has not been granted in any cases involving abortion rights, affirmative action, campaign finance law, or gay and lesbian rights. But there are potentially important rulings about many different areas of law.

The right age to die? For some, science outpaces the Supreme Court on juveniles, death penalty
When 15-year-old Luis Cruz joined the Latin Kings in 1991, he was a child by almost any measure: he couldn’t legally drive, drop out of school, or buy a beer. But was he still a child a few years later when—just months after he turned 18—he murdered two people on the orders of gang leaders?
First execution using fentanyl carried out after 8th Circuit rejects appeal

Nebraska inmate Carey Dean Moore became the first person to be executed with the drug fentanyl on Tuesday after a federal appeals court rejected a drug company’s challenge to two…

Executed Tennessee man coughed and gasped before dying; Sotomayor had warned of ‘torturous pain’

A Tennessee man was executed on Thursday after U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor warned that he was likely to suffer “torturous pain” while his suffering is shrouded “behind a…

Drugmaker’s lawsuit could halt Nebraska’s first lethal injection
The American arm of German drug manufacturer Fresenius Kabi has filed a lawsuit that could stop Nebraska’s first lethal injection.
Would Scalia have shifted on death penalty if he’d heard pope’s decree? Maybe, Chicago cardinal says
Just hours after Pope Francis declared the death penalty “inadmissible” in all cases, Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago urged elected officials and leaders to recognize their responsibility and vested interest “in defending the sacredness and value of every human life.”
New catechism calling for end to death penalty affirms evolving doctrine, cardinal tells ABA panel

Updated: In an appearance at the ABA Annual Meeting on Thursday, Chicago Cardinal Blase Cupich said revisions to the catechism on the death penalty reflect evolving church doctrine and an acknowledgement that the scales of justice can’t be rebalanced after a murder.

Justice, mercy and redemption: Bryan Stevenson’s death row advocacy
Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, will be awarded the American Bar Association’s highest honor, the ABA Medal, given to lawyers who have “rendered conspicuous service to the cause of American jurisprudence.”
Q&A with Bryan Stevenson
What keeps you going in the toughest times?

"I’ve had the great privilege of representing people whose lives and value and humanity are so clear to me that I’m very motivated. Winning their freedom is enormously energizing."
Judge halts execution over suit filed by drugmaker
A Nevada judge has blocked the execution of an inmate who sought to die based on objections of a drugmaker that wants its midazolam returned.
Supreme Court rules lawyers cannot defy their clients’ wishes to argue for their innocence
A recent Supreme Court decision addresses a dilemma that would challenge any lawyer—how to respond if a client refuses to confess to a capital crime when the lawyer believes such a strategy may be the only way to avoid a death sentence.
Supreme Court declines to hear death row inmate’s ‘gay bias’ case
On June 18, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear arguments in the case of Charles Rhines, a South Dakota prisoner who claims he was sentenced to death in part because he is gay. Rhines was convicted in 1993 of fatally stabbing 22-year-old Donnivan Schaeffer during a robbery in Rapid City.

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