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Executions at Midyear


The Death Penalty Information Center actually does offer some information, in addition to its more voluminous, and steady, diet of abolitionism.  The DPIC reports that as of yesterday, the midyear point for 2011, there had been 25 executions in the United States.

Extrapolating that through the end of the year, that would mean 50 executions will occur by the time 2012 begins.  That would be the second highest number of executions in the last five years (the highest was 52, in 2009, and the lowest was 37 the year before).

One frequent refrain from the DPIC is that "the death penalty is dying."  To the extent that means there are fewer executions, it was correct for several years toward the beginning of this millenium.  Thus, the number of executions fairly steadily declined from 66 in 2001 to a low of 37 seven years later.  In percentage terms, that is a significant drop-off (although some of it was due to the quasi-suspension that occurred while the Baze challenge was litigated through the Supreme Court).  As the 2011 midyear figure suggests, however  --  and as Michael Corleone famously said  --  "Times are changing."



Governor Rick Scott of Florida has signed a death warrant for Manuel Valle. He is scheduled to be executed on August 2nd for the 1978 murder of Police Officer Louis Pena. If Florida starts setting execution dates for the dozens of death-row inmates whose appeals have been exhausted, we may well see a huge uptick in executions in the USA. See the link below for a list of warrant-ready Florida murderers:


Let's hope he does. Victims' families have been waiting far too long.

Justice was finally done in the Bible case. More justice needs to be done.

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