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November 9, 2004

Death is not so different

I noted in this post the latest data documenting the nation's still expanding prison population, and today we have this Reuters article highlighting the impact of California's growing death row population:

So steadily are death row ranks swelling in the nation's most populous state that California is planning a controversial $220 million expansion of its only prison for the condemned at San Quentin north of San Francisco.

The article is mostly about the slow pace of appellate review of death sentences.  However, as is true with prison populations, one should never forget that the death penalty story is typically state-specific (as further evidenced by this TalkLeft post noting approaching executions in Texas and Kentucky).

November 9, 2004 at 02:57 PM | Permalink

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Comments

On the state variation front, I have to recommend "Putting Them There, Keeping Them There, and Killing Them: An Analysis of State-Level Variations in Death Penalty Intensity" by William Lofquist, 87 Iowa L. Rev. 1505 (2002). The article characterizes death penalty states as "Inactive" "Symbolic" "Active" "Inefficient" and "Aggressive" and attempt to begin shedding some light on why some states may have high rates of execution and others have high rates of reversal. One of the few law review articles I've read that I thought was "independently" interesting (rather than interesting to the relatively few academics and researchers it is aimed at and the professors' tenure/peer review committees)... Professor Berman's writings excluded, of course. :)

Posted by: District Clerk Battling Blakely | Nov 9, 2004 5:02:45 PM

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