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What Punishment For This Crime?

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Ralph Wilbur Baker was murdered Wednesday, AP reports.  He was surely no angel, being incarcerated in the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison in Corcoran. Still, he was deprived of his life without due process of law and probably did not deserve death.

Christopher Bradford, his cellmate, is suspected of the crime.  If he did indeed commit this murder, what punishment should society impose?  We have two choices:

1.  Death.
2.  No punishment at all.

You see, Bradford is already sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole.  A second life sentence is therefore no sentence.

If California voters are foolish enough to abolish the death penalty this November, then option 2 will be the only one.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2012/08/02/4687571/inmate-death-investigated-at-central.html#storylink=cpy

1 Comment

I have debated the death penalty many times at law schools around the country, and this is the scenario abolitionists have the hardest time answering. Generally what happens is that they change the subject -- to racism, lousy defense lawyers, world opinion -- something, ANYTHING, else.

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