Wednesday, November 25, 2015
"We simply are not charging people with the death penalty like we once did...''
...according to one expert interviewed by The Cleveland Plain Dealer for this report on prosecutors seemingly diminished interest in pursuing the death penalty. The report begins:
Prosecutors across Ohio are changing the way they charge suspected killers. They are indicting far fewer with the death penalty and pushing more sentences of life in prison without parole.
The number of capital murder indictments filed across the state since 2010 has plummeted by 77 percent, as just 19 have been brought this year.
During the same time period, the number of inmates sentenced to life without parole has spiked 92 percent, according to a Plain Dealer examination of state prison records and other public documents.
The Ohio numbers mirror a national trend involving the death penalty. Legal experts cited the high costs of taking a capital case to trial. They also said decades of appeals make the death penalty extremely burdensome on the criminal justice system and traumatic for victims' families.