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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 135853 Find in a Library
Title: Confining the Condemned
Journal: Corrections Compendium  Volume:17  Issue:1  Dated:(January 1992)  Pages:1,6-19
Author(s): M Marlette
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 15
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Conditions of confinement for the 2,547 prisoners sentenced to death in the United States vary by State.
Abstract: In California, men and women sentenced to die are housed on two death rows. They live alone, leave their cells three times a week for outside exercise, and may have contact visits five times a week unless they pose management problems. In Colorado, condemned inmates may exercise only 1 hour every 2 weeks and have 1 visit a week up to 6 hours. Texas houses the most prisoners condemned to death. Inmates in that State may work in a garment factory with other prisoners on the row. They are allowed out of their cells 3 hours or more a day, but may only have noncontact visits with their families 2 hours a week. Maryland, by contrast, does not have a death row. Inmates sentenced to death there live and work in the general population of the maximum security Maryland penitentiary. Of all those on death row across the country, the age ranges from 17 to 76 years; only 38 or about 1.5 percent are women. Approximately 51 percent of the prisoners are white, 38 percent black, 7.1 percent Hispanic, 1.8 percent Native American, and 0.6 percent Asian. Access to legal aid is provided through a law library in 27 correctional systems, and all States report providing mental health counseling. In addition, all States provide access to an outside exercise yard for death row inmates. The amount of time in the yard, however, varies considerably. Most correctional systems allow individual television sets, and radios are available. Correspondence courses are the most prevalent type of education on death row; 11 States report they have a death row chaplain to handle religious counseling; and 15 systems report no problems relating to death row. A death penalty chart is provided that gives data by State on the year of instituting the death penalty, method of execution, number of under death sentence, and number executed since 1976.
Main Term(s): Death row inmates
Index Term(s): Capital punishment; State-by-state analyses
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