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December 14, 2004

The death penalty making more headlines

Though I am obviously terrible at predicting when the Supreme Court will decide Booker and Fanfan, it seems I can predict what sentencing stories will be making headlines.  As I suggested here, with non-capital sentencing in limbo for another month, the sentencing news is likely to be focused on death penalty developments. 

Of course, we can thank the Scott Peterson case for most of the capital sentencing headlines.  I am hopeful, though not optimistic, that much of the coverage will be as thoughtful as provided here by Dahlia Lithwick on NPR.  As I noted before here, though the Peterson case has been sensationalized by the media, it does raise a number of interesting legal issues.  (It has also, not surprisingly, generated interesting blogsphere coverage at the Volokh Conspiracy and TalkLeft and Professor Yin.)

But also noteworthy and making headlines is the Death Penalty Information Center's latest year-end report on the death penalty.  (Press release here, report forthcoming.)  This report — which asserts 2004 drops in death sentences, executions, death row population, and public support for capital punishment (and thus reinforces some of the points I made here) — has already generated coverage by CNN.com and the LA Times.

December 14, 2004 at 02:53 PM | Permalink


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