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June 10, 2006

The latest on the death penalty for child rape

Adam Liptak, the terrific law reporter for the New York Times, shifted from writing yesterday about rock-paper-scissors ADR to writing today about the state trend to make some child rapists eligible for the death penalty.  Here is the start of his work today:

Oklahoma became the fifth state to allow the death penalty for sex crimes against children yesterday, a day after South Carolina enacted a similar law.  The constitutionality of the new laws is unclear. 

The Oklahoma measure, signed into law by Gov. Brad Henry, a Democrat, makes people found guilty of rape and other sex crimes more than once against children younger than 14 eligible for the death penalty.  The South Carolina law also requires multiple offenses, but against children under 11.  Gov. Mark Sanford, a Republican, said in a statement that the law would "be an incredibly powerful deterrent to offenders that have already been released."

But Richard C. Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, a research group that opposes capital punishment, said the new laws were largely symbolic, would impose disproportionate punishment and were probably unconstitutional.

Related posts on capital punishment for child rape:

June 10, 2006 at 10:42 PM | Permalink

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Comments

Man, these guys got this right. I'm not big on the death penalty. There's nothing wrong with good, healthy sex between consenting adults, but the rape of a child, especially repeated sex crimes against children deserves the death penaly.

Posted by: better sex | Aug 18, 2006 7:57:49 PM

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