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Full-Text Articles in Law

As Seen On Screen: American Ambivalence Shown Through Death Penalty And Vigilante Films, Lisette Donewald May 2022

As Seen On Screen: American Ambivalence Shown Through Death Penalty And Vigilante Films, Lisette Donewald

Honors Scholar Theses

The United States is one of the last western nations still practicing capital punishment. A history of and commitment to vigilantism and its ideals offers an explanation of America’s retention of capital punishment. Employing scholarship on law and popular culture and vigilantism, this thesis finds that pro-death penalty frames are prevalent in vigilante films while anti-death penalty frames are prevalent in films that focus specifically upon capital punishment. Since the 1960’s however, there has been a gradual shift towards anti-death penalty frames and away from pro-death penalty frames as well as changes in the themes presented in the two genres …


"Insanity Is Smashing Up Against My Soul": The Fifth Circuit And Competency To Be Executed Cases After Panetti V. Quarterman, Michael L. Perlin, Talia Roitberg Harmon Apr 2022

"Insanity Is Smashing Up Against My Soul": The Fifth Circuit And Competency To Be Executed Cases After Panetti V. Quarterman, Michael L. Perlin, Talia Roitberg Harmon

Articles & Chapters

One of the open secrets of death penalty law and policy is the astonishingly high percentage of individuals on death row with serious mental disabilities. This is well known to lawyers who represent this cohort (and presumably, equally well known to the district attorneys who nevertheless prosecute them and the judges who try and sentence them), but is not generally discussed in the press nor, certainly, in political discourse. In the aggregate, this is far beneath society’s radar.

It is now over 14 years since the US Supreme Court decided a case that clarified the underlying issues. In Panetti v. …


When Police Volunteer To Kill, Alexandra L. Klein Jan 2022

When Police Volunteer To Kill, Alexandra L. Klein

Scholarly Articles

The Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of lethal injection, yet states continue to struggle with drug shortages and botched executions. Some states have authorized alternative methods of execution, including the firing squad. Utah, which has consistently carried out firing squad executions throughout its history, relies on police officers from the jurisdiction where the crime took place to volunteer to carry out these executions. This represents a plausible--and probable--method for other states in conducting firing squad executions.

Public and academic discussion of the firing squad has centered on questions of pain and suffering. It has not engaged with the consequences …


"Only To Have A Say In The Way He Dies": Bodily Autonomy And Methods Of Execution, Alexandra L. Klein Jan 2022

"Only To Have A Say In The Way He Dies": Bodily Autonomy And Methods Of Execution, Alexandra L. Klein

Scholarly Articles

Capital punishment is one of the most significant intrusions into a person's bodily autonomy; the state takes a person's life. Even though the state has stripped a person on death row of much of their autonomy and intends to kill them, removing all autonomy, a person sentenced to death may, in some circumstances, choose how they will die. While most states rely on a single method of execution, some states permit a condemned person to choose among two or more methods of execution. Constitutional challenges to methods of execution requires the challenger to demonstrate a substantial risk of severe pain …


Can Delaying An Execution Due To Covid-19 Amount To Unconstitutional Discrimination?, Benjamin Joshua Ong Jan 2022

Can Delaying An Execution Due To Covid-19 Amount To Unconstitutional Discrimination?, Benjamin Joshua Ong

Research Collection Yong Pung How School Of Law

This note discusses the case of Syed Suhail bin Syed Zin v Attorney-General [2021] 1 SLR 809 (CA); [2021] 4 SLR 698 (HC) and its implications for equality law in Singapore.


Where Black Lives Matter Less: Understanding The Impact Of Black Victims On Sentencing Outcomes In Texas Capital Murder Cases From 1973 To 2018, Jelani Jefferson Exum, David Niven Jan 2022

Where Black Lives Matter Less: Understanding The Impact Of Black Victims On Sentencing Outcomes In Texas Capital Murder Cases From 1973 To 2018, Jelani Jefferson Exum, David Niven

Faculty Publications

The systemic disregard for Black lives in America was on full display when footage of a police officer kneeling on the neck of George Floyd went viral. Mr. Floyd’s resultant death set off protests declaring that Black Lives Matter throughout the nation and across the world. While national attention rightfully turned to demanding police accountability for undue violence, the prevailing conversation also incorporated at least a declared concern for addressing institutionalized racism within the criminal justice system and other American institutions. The term of the day became “antiracism.” With regard to police killings, the lesson is that police officers disproportionately …


Getting To Death: Race And The Paths Of Capital Cases After Furman, Jeffrey A. Fagan, Garth Davies, Ray Paternoster Jan 2022

Getting To Death: Race And The Paths Of Capital Cases After Furman, Jeffrey A. Fagan, Garth Davies, Ray Paternoster

Faculty Scholarship

Decades of research on the administration of the death penalty have recognized the persistent arbitrariness in its implementation and the racial inequality in the selection of defendants and cases for capital punishment. This Article provides new insights into the combined effects of these two constitutional challenges. We show how these features of post-Furman capital punishment operate at each stage of adjudication, from charging death-eligible cases to plea negotiations to the selection of eligible cases for execution and ultimately to the execution itself, and how their effects combine to sustain the constitutional violations first identified 50 years ago in Furman …