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News Scan

Poll Shows National Support for Death Penalty: JoAnne Viviano of the Columbus Dispatch reports a 2012 USA Today/ Gallup poll shows 63 percent of Americans support the death penalty. About 1,000 adults were polled by phone from December 19-22, 2012. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percent.  Among those surveyed 80 percent of the Republicans and 51 percent of the Democrats supported the death penalty. Self-identified conservative respondents were 75 percent in favor, with liberals at 47 percent. In 2011, 61 percent of respondents were in favor of the death penalty compared to 64 percent in 2010.

NY Legislature to Vote on Gun Control Bill: Michael Gormley of the Associated Press reports the New York Legislature will vote Monday on whether to enact a gun control measure. The bill would add further restrictions to the ban on assault rifles, limit magazines to seven bullets from ten, and increase background checks for firearm purchasers. Crimes involving firearms would receive additional mandatory sentences. Illegal gun trafficking and mental health issues are also addressed. State funding for schools to protect against school shootings are expected to be included as well.

MS Inmate Pleads Guilty in Fatal Riot: The Associated Press reports inmate Yoany Oriel Serrano-Bejarano will plead guilty to participating in a May 2011 Mississippi prison riot which cost one correction officer his life. Twenty others were injured. Serrano-Bejarano, an illegal immigrant convicted in the U.S.,  assaulted a guard then helped more inmates climb onto the prison roof. On the roof inmates beat 24-year-old guard Catlin Carithers to death. The riot took place at the Adams County Correctional Facility, a private prison housing 2,500 illegal immigrants, most of whom were convicted of re entering in the U.S. after deportation.

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