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NCJ Number: 158461 Find in a Library
Title: United States Supreme Court and the Future of Capital Punishment (From Visions for Change: Crime and Justice in the Twenty-First Century, P 129-156, 1996, Roslyn Muraskin and Albert R. Roberts, eds. - see NCJ-158451)
Author(s): K C Haas
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 28
Sponsoring Agency: Prentice-Hall, Inc
Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
Sale Source: Prentice-Hall, Inc
Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter examines the role of the U.S. Supreme Court in monitoring the American system of capital punishment, and in determining its future course.
Abstract: In its 1976 decision in Gregg v. Georgia, the Court upheld the constitutionality of State death penalty laws and the imposition of a death sentence by a judge who had considered all mitigating and aggravating factors concerning the defendant and the crime. In the period between 1976 and 1983, the Court set limits on the applicability of the death penalty by excluding defendants who did not actually kill the victim, and by stressing the need to consider all mitigating factors. Since 1983, the Court has taken a more activist role in setting capital punishment policy, rejecting major constitutional challenges, and allowing the executions of defendants who were at least 16 years old when the crime was committed, mentally retarded defendants, and defendants who neither intended to kill or who actually killed the victim. The author predicts that the expansion of capital punishment will lead the public to be increasingly skeptical of its efficacy, and will eventually result in its abolition by the Supreme Court on constitutional grounds. 21 notes and 51 references
Main Term(s): Courts
Index Term(s): Abolishment of capital punishment; Capital punishment; US Supreme Court decisions
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