California governor to place moratorium on death penalty

California governor to place moratorium on death penalty

The 737 inmates on California's death row got a reprieve from Gov. Gavin Newsom when he signed an executive order Wednesday placing a moratorium on executions.

Newsom has the constitutional authority to grant reprieves to condemned inmates, but he does not have the power to order the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to shut down the death chamber or halt its efforts to establish a lethal injection protocol, Scheidegger said.

She continued: "I have met with and am very supportive of Governor Newsom and his decision to help bring an end to the California Death Penalty".

In his speech on Wednesday, the governor will highlight the racial disparities in sentencing - noting that 6 in 10 prisoners on California's death row are people of color - the cost of enforcing the death penalty and the number of innocent people who have been sentenced to death.

The last execution in California was when the state put Clarence Ray Allen, 76, to death on January 17, 2006. "It has provided no public safety benefit or value as a deterrent". The foundation is in favor of the death penalty and helped draft the 2016 resolution to fast track executions. Twenty-five people on California's death row have exhausted all of their appeals.

No death row inmates will be released.

Michele Hanisee, president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys, issued a statement criticizing Newsom's intention to sign the executive order, saying it is not what Californians want.

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Newsom told CNN's Anderson Cooper on Monday that he spoke with Trump "because I wanted to extend to him my appreciation" for visiting California in the wake of the fires, and to "express the fact that the people in those communities were grateful to him". As with so many other issues - climate change, abortion, taxes - there is a wide gulf on how states approach capital punishment.

Newsom does not have the power to overturn California's death penalty law, Kreitzberg said, but he can refuse to sign any death warrants and can commute death sentences to life imprisonment. "But most of all, the death penalty is absolute, irreversible and irreparable in the event of a human error". The executive order, as The Chronicle notes, comes after two attempts to repeal the death penalty at the ballot box, in 2012 and 2016, failed by slim margins.

California's death row is crowded with inmates, many of whom have been there for decades.

Execution chamber at the San Quentin prison. Republican Illinois Gov. George Ryan was the first in 2000 and later was followed by governors in Pennsylvania, Washington and Oregon.

Seventy-nine condemned California inmates have died of natural causes since California reinstated capital punishment in 1978.

"Our death penalty system has been - by any measure - a failure", Newsom states in prepared remarks he is expected to deliver on Wednesday.

But Newsom's action will anger death penalty proponents.

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