Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Connecticut Victim Families Support Repeal of Death Penalty

The Hartford Courant asks if the death penalty is worth it in Connecticut. The state's only execution in the last half-century was the lethal injection of serial killer Michael Ross on May 13, 2005, 21 years after his arrest. Ross had not exhausted all his appeals, but waived them and repeatedly asked to be executed--similar to the three execution carried out in Pennsylvania since 1976. However, Pennsylvania has 222 killers on death row, Connecticut has 11.

The Connecticut legislature is considering a bill to abolish the death penalty. More than two dozen family members of murder victims came to the Capitol complex recently to support the bill, and 76 relatives signed a letter backing the bill. Some have described the death penalty as a cruel and costly hoax.

Connecticut's repeal bill, submitted by state Representative Gary Holder is written as a prospective measure, which means it will apply to those convicted after its effective date.
Those on death row and anyone convicted before the repeal, if it happens,will still face death penalty. But as Gail Canzano, a clinical psychologist from West Hartford, whose brother-in-law was murdered in Hartford in 1999, told the Courant, those already condemned, "have decades of appeals ahead of them and it's unlikely either of the murderers will ever be executed." For this, she said, "the entire state watched as the family suffered in the courtroom, reliving the events through bloody photographs and horrifying details."

To read more:,0,1892358,print.story

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