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Criminal Procedure

University of Richmond

Capital punishment

Articles 1 - 8 of 8

Full-Text Articles in Law

Death Row, Calls For Indifference, And Redemption Of The Soul, Corinna Barrett Lain Jan 2016

Death Row, Calls For Indifference, And Redemption Of The Soul, Corinna Barrett Lain

Law Faculty Publications

In this Response, I first engage with McLeod’s article, summarizing its key claims and endorsing its call for legislative action, while disagreeing at times with the analytical moves it makes along the way. I then turn to two questions that the article inspired. One stems from comments in the constitutional, academic, and public discourse calling for indifference to the way we treat the condemned in light of the way they treated their victims. Given the depravity of the crimes the condemned have committed, why should we care about the conditions under which they are housed on death row? The ...


A Survey Of The History Of The Death Penalty In The United States, Sheherezade C. Malik, D. Paul Holdsworth Jan 2015

A Survey Of The History Of The Death Penalty In The United States, Sheherezade C. Malik, D. Paul Holdsworth

Law Student Publications

Since the founding of Jamestown Colony in 1607, few topics in American life and culture have generated as much controversy, both in terms of persistence and volatility, as the death penalty. Foreign policy, economic recessions, and social movements come to the forefront of national discussion in their own respective ebbs and flows. Capital punishment, however, has been a staple of the American criminal justice system since the early inhabiting of the continent, and has remained a permanent vehicle through which we can enact retribution on the most heinous criminal offenders in our society, ridding ourselves of the worst among us.


Making Sure We Are Getting It Right: Repairing "The Machinery Of Death" By Narrowing Capital Eligibility, Ann E. Reid Jan 2015

Making Sure We Are Getting It Right: Repairing "The Machinery Of Death" By Narrowing Capital Eligibility, Ann E. Reid

Law Student Publications

This comment argues that, starting with the framework of the federal system, there is a way to reconcile modern concerns about the death penalty with society's need for leverage over those criminals who truly are the worst of the worst-those who present grave threats to society even after incarceration. This reconciliation can be achieved by amending the Federal Death Penalty Act to require prosecutors to establish one additional element before they can secure a capital conviction: future dangerousness of the defendant in prison..


A Shot In The Dark: Why Virginia Should Adopt The Firing Squad As Its Primary Method Of Execution, P. Thomas Distanislao, Iii Jan 2015

A Shot In The Dark: Why Virginia Should Adopt The Firing Squad As Its Primary Method Of Execution, P. Thomas Distanislao, Iii

Law Student Publications

This comment recommends that Virginia cease its use of lethal injection because of its high botch rates and growing impracticability due to drug shortages. Instead, the Commonwealth should use the firing squad as a more effective means of execution, thereby leading the nation in a transition towards a more efficient and reliable method.


Grave Injustice: Unearthing Wrongful Executions, Mary Kelly Tate Aug 2013

Grave Injustice: Unearthing Wrongful Executions, Mary Kelly Tate

Law Faculty Publications

This book review discusses Richard A. Stack's book, Grave Injustice, which illustrates the flaws in America's use of capital punishment. "Simply put, the death penalty is shown to be a massive policy failure diminishing the legitimacy of the criminal justice system in the world's leading democracy. Stack uses his reportorial skills to distill the complex subject of the American death penalty into a digestible form, yet he never cuts corners with the human dimension. This dimension is always at the center of crime and punishment and, most hauntingly, at the center of the American death penalty and ...


Death Penalty Drugs: A Prescription That's Getting Harder To Fill, Corinna Barrett Lain Jul 2013

Death Penalty Drugs: A Prescription That's Getting Harder To Fill, Corinna Barrett Lain

Law Faculty Publications

Six states have abolished the death penalty in the past six years—Illinois, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, and New Mexico. We haven’t seen mass moves like that since the 1960s. What gives?

Part of the answer is that those states weren’t executing anyway. More people in those states were dying on death row waiting to be executed than were actually being executed, and the death penalty is breathtakingly expensive to maintain (a point to which I’ll return in a moment).

So why weren’t the states executing? We tend to hear about innocence claims, trench ...


The Virtues Of Thinking Small, Corinna Barrett Lain Jan 2013

The Virtues Of Thinking Small, Corinna Barrett Lain

Law Faculty Publications

Professor Lain argues that, in efforts to determine how close American states are to abolishing the death penalty, scholars should "think small," examining the ground level issues that affect its imposition. Among the issues she explores are exonerations of defendants, the legality and obtainability of lethal injection drugs, and the high costs of seeking and imposing capital punishment.


Lessons Learned From The Evolution Of Evolving Standards, Corinna Barrett Lain Jan 2010

Lessons Learned From The Evolution Of Evolving Standards, Corinna Barrett Lain

Law Faculty Publications

In the discussion that follows, I explore the evolution of the "evolving standards" doctrine to make a point about its legitimacy and Supreme Court decisionmaking under the Cruel and Unusual Punishments Clause more generally. In Part I, I trace the origins of the doctrine to its present state. In Part II, I turn to lessons learned from the evolution of "evolving standards," questioning the textual defense of the doctrine and the constraining power of law itself. I conclude that while the "evolving standards" doctrine is problematic, it is not the crux of the problem. Supreme Court decisionmaking in the death ...