<< News Scan | Main | Lithwick Article >>


News Scan

| 2 Comments

Death Penalty loophole could possibly set convicted murderers free. Lawmakers in New Jersey are currently drafting legislation to abolish the death penalty as reported in an AP story by Beth DeFalco. In accordance with the new law, nine NJ death row inmates, including sex offenders and cop killers, would have to be re-sentenced under the laws which existed at the time they committed their crimes; many of which do not carry life without the possibility of parole sentences.

Death Row inmate Michael Anthony Rodriguez wishes to drop all appeals and expedite his execution as soon as possible. Rodriguez, 44, is one of the 7 inmates who escaped from a Texas prison, committed a string of robberies and killed a police officer on Christmas Eve in 2000. According to an AP story, after being ordered to undergo a psychological evaluation, Rodriguez expressed his plans to move forward with the process and gratitude to the court for respecting his constitutional right.

2 Comments

Wouldn't the best solution be for the Governor to commute the death sentences of existing inmates on the row to LWOP?

Of course, that they are even having this conversation is ridiculous.

The abolition bill in NJ specifically calls for all current death sentences to remain in effect unless the inmate agrees to: (A) accept LWOP & (B) agree not to appeal the LWOP sentence.

Even if sentenced under the laws in effect at the time of the homicides -- which can only happen if the bill is not passed -- no one currently on death row is are looking at parole eligibility dates before their 78th birthday, and most not until well after the 100th birthday.

Leave a comment