Retribution in criminal justice reform

“In (the) battle over Nebraska’s death penalty, victims’ families refuse to be political pawns” by @lilianasegura at The Intercept. 

This parallels California’s upcoming vote to abolish the death penalty. There probably will also be a pro-death penalty measure on the Nov 18th ballot. There are 743 on death row. DA’s continue to support it as a deterrent and a form of “closure.” In days gone by, and currently, executions are reserved for the “worst of the worst” according to San Bernardino DA Mike Ramos in 2015. (Center, in the above picture). He echoes the Nebraska pro death penalty pushback via talking about the victims’ families needing some type of relief.

This article from the Intercept considers the alternative approach to capital punishment which is life in prison, inmates working full time, and financial restitution to victims’ families for wages.

My stake in this debate is the documented number of innocent exonerees who were on death row. In 2015, 6 men were released from prison after death sentences having been rigorously opposed by prosecutors such as Mr. Ramos. Nation wide, the numbers are substantial.  False or misleading forensic experts are statistically significant factors.

“Today Kelle ( murder victim’s sister who opposes the death penalty in Nebraska) criticizes the way politicians treat grieving families like political pawns, “putting you on a chessboard to their advantage.” If you agree with the state, they’ll support you at trial and beyond, she said. But if you stand up against executions, “all of a sudden, along comes the big King, or in our case, Governor Ricketts, [to defeat you]. And that’s really very disheartening when you work so hard and it costs so much emotionally to do this work.”

About csidds

Dr. Michael Bowers is a long time forensic consultant in the US and international court systems.
This entry was posted in AAFS, death penalty, exoneration and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s