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News Scan

Signatures for Death Penalty Measure Submitted:  Californians for Death Penalty Reform and Savings submitted 593,000 signatures Thursday for a November ballot initiative to accelerate executions for death row inmates, which will appear alongside an opposing measure to repeal capital punishment in the state.  Elliot Spagat and Don Thompson of the AP reports that the measure would speed up the appeals process for death penalty cases by assigning attorneys to condemned inmates more quickly, limiting the number of appeals and forcing them to be filed sooner.  The whole process would have to be completed in five years, sharply contrasting the current system, in which inmates don't get a lawyer assigned until five years after their sentence.  Other provisions of the measure would allow death row inmates to be housed in prisons other than San Quentin and require them to work and pay victim restitution while they await execution.  California has the largest death row in the nation with nearly 750 convicted killers, but an execution hasn't been carried out for a decade and only 13 total have been executed since the capital punishment's reinstatement in 1978.

CA Parolee Added to FBI's Most Wanted List:  A convicted felon and parolee from Los Angeles has been added to the FBI's 10 Most Wanted Fugitives list after fleeing last month following the murder of his pregnant girlfriend and her unborn child.  Willian Avila of NBC Los Angeles reports that Philip Patrick Policarpio, 39, a parolee, became angry with his pregnant girlfriend on April 12 and beat her in the face with his firsts before shooting her in the forehead with a handgun, killing her.  In 2000, Policarpio fired nine shots into another car over a dispute, after which he fled to the Philippines.  He was deported to the U.S. the following year, convicted and sentenced to 14 years in prison.  He was released on parole in May 2014.

OH Jury Recommends Death for Serial Killer:  A jury recommended the death penalty Thursday for a Cleveland serial killer convicted of murdering three women.  The AP reports that Michael Madison, 38, was convicted of aggravated murder earlier this month in the deaths of three women whose bodies were found wrapped in garbage bags near his apartment in July 2013.  The judge will now consider the jury's recommendation and issue a final decision on May 26.

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