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Corrections in America week 12 day 33-35

by: Alexander Vinegar

Corrections in America week 12 day 33-35 CJ 2030

Marketplace > University of Cincinnati > Criminal Justice > CJ 2030 > Corrections in America week 12 day 33 35
Alexander Vinegar

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These notes cover what is going to be in our final exam.
Corrections in America
Spencer Hochstetler, M.S
Class Notes
Corrections in America
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Alexander Vinegar on Wednesday April 13, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to CJ 2030 at University of Cincinnati taught by Spencer Hochstetler, M.S in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 12 views. For similar materials see Corrections in America in Criminal Justice at University of Cincinnati.


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Date Created: 04/13/16
Chapter 11: Legal issues and the death penalty part III (Final part) Important Info             Court Cases (Week 12 Day 33)  Since early times executions could be used as a punishment  for crime and  the establishment of the U.S., several crimes have resulted in death  sentences o The main three:      Treason     Murder     Rape  Historical Origin o Humans have used many techniques to execute criminals:  Hanging, burning, boiling in oil, impaling, decapitation,  shootings, strangling, drawing and quartering, electrocuting,  gassing, and lethal injection o Controversy surrounding the death penalty which has resulted in  strides towards more humane executions:        Amendment ban on cruel and unusual punishment th th       and 14     Amendment equability issues  Public attitudes towards the death penalty o August 6, 1890  William Kemmler, first person executed via the electric chair in the Auburn Penitentiary in New York o February 8, 1924  Gee Jon is the first person executed via the gas chamber  (cyanide)  This system grew in favor as many states experienced  gruesome executions through the electric chair o December 6, 1982  Charles Brooks is the first person executed via lethal injection  Method grew in favor during the 1970s and 1980s and  seen as more humane  There is also legal challenges where there was an increase of appeals against the death sentences o Furman v. Georgia (1972)  The Supreme Court ruled that capital punishment is  constitutional, but most states were not applying it fairly  (arbitrary, capricious, and discriminatory manner) and some  methods were cruel and unusual punishment  States with the death penalty had to prove they would become  compliant with the Court’s constitutional requirements before  continuing  The Furman decision resulted in a moratorium on the death penalty which lasted for four years o Gregg v. Georgia (1976)  The Court reaffirms the death penalty  1977: Gary Gilmore is the first person to be executed (by  firing squad) after the moratorium ends o States used to try and have mandatory death sentences for homicides;  but juries did not like this and would refuse to convict  Juries now look at intent to kill and malice aforethought  Asking the question whether the offender have the intent  to kill prior to the crime and whether it was planned and  premeditated  States decided to make it mandatory for certain “classes” of  homicide  All death penalty states switched to giving the jury total  discretion on granting it and prosecutors makes the decision to whether to seek it or not  The court determines the death penalty is cruel and unusual by….    Interpretation   “Living document” (evolving standards) vs original intent  (what did the originals believe?) o  If is the living document, what evidence is there that society now  finds this action to be cruel and unusual?  Supreme Court can look at prior cases, appellate circuit court  rulings, state laws, and (controversially) other countries    “Protected” Classes o    “classes” of people are entire groups of people that fit into a  particular category o The Supreme Court has used these evolving standards of decency to  rule entire classes as ineligible for the death penalty:     Juveniles     Rapists     The mentally incompetent  Atkins v. Virginia (2002) o   The Court decided that “mentally retarded” inmates are ineligible to receive the death penalty o The Courts left the determination of what constitutes mental  retardation up to the trial judge and opted for a brightline rule: IQ  less than 70  Roper v. Simmons (2005) o In a 5­4 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that juveniles under the  age of 18 are ineligible for the death penalty o Juveniles are different from adults because…. Reduced maturity, not fully developed psychosocially or  neurologically, not as proficient in knowing right from wrong,  more impulsive  Kennedy v. Louisiana (2008) o Supreme Court ruled (5­4) that a child rapist cannot be executed if  there is no loss of life  Rape is not a sufficient offense for the ultimate sanction  The Court attempted to portray the Western world and any  states as showing a trend toward removing rape as an  executable offense  A major concern in death penalty cases is the issue of equitability o There are many questions whether the punishment is applied even­ handedly across a jurisdiction (Week 12 Day 34­35)  A major concern of court cases is whether or not the punishment is applied  even­handedly across a judgement o McCleskey v. Kemp (1987)  McCleskey was an African American man who was convicted  of the murder of a white police officer     Argued statistical evidence suggests that the race of the  defendant and the race of the victim play roles in the  determination of a death sentence in Georgia  Black defendants that killed a white victim were far more likely to receive the death penalty  This was based on a report by David Baldus, an expert on  death penalty cases     the Court ruled that McCleskey did not demonstrate that  his race or the race of his victim played any role in  his  case  The Courts seek the death penalty because the public have strong ideas and  feelings on what to do with murderers o   Revenge     Seeking retribution for a harm inflicted  Allows for closure and satisfies a “life for a life” or “eye for an  eye” standard o   Just deserts     Argument that offenders should receive severe punishment  because of the serious nature of the crime o   Societal protection     The argument that once executed, the offender cannot  commit another crime, thus protecting society o We might execute murderers in an attempt to deter others from  committing murder    Deterrent    criminal sanction will stop potential offenders by inflicting  suffering on actual offenders o Proponents:  It will deter some offenders from murdering and committing  crimes due to their punishment they are likely to receive  o Opponents:  May not deter and could actually lead to more violence   Knowing the publics attitudes are important… o Proponents argues that giving someone a life sentence is not adequate  because those offenders could gain early release through parole  One way to appease this criticism is   life certai , the idea that  they become ineligible for parole  If the court fulfills capital punishment on an innocent person that was  wrongly convicted…. o The irreversible nature of the death penalty makes many people leery  about its existence o The furthering of technological advancement that has led to many  death row offenders being exonerated  The cost of the Death Penalty…. o The costs are high. Death Penalty Information center predicts that it  costs, on average, $30 million per offender


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