Death penalty grows rarer in U.S.
Connecticut this year upped the number of states to repeal the death penalty to 17. Some states that have had relatively high numbers of executions in the past executed no one this year, or issued no new death sentences.
“Capital punishment is becoming marginalized and meaningless in most of the country,” said Richard Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, which released a new study on the death penalty Tuesday (Dec. 18).
“In 2012, fewer states have the death penalty, fewer carried out executions, and death sentences and executions were clustered in a small number of states. It is very likely that more states will take up the question of death penalty repeal in the years ahead,” Dieter said.
Nine states executed death row inmates this year, led by Texas, which executed 15 people. Overall this year, four states — Texas, Oklahoma, Mississippi and Arizona — carried out more than three-quarters of all state executions.
Last year, 13 states used the death penalty. [More]