With the death penalty still valid in 29 states thousands of prisoners in the United States await execution. While the majority of them have committed one or more murders, many believe that the death penalty in respect of justice for the victim's family is on par. Others, however, consider it inhumane, regardless of the crimes committed by the inmates.
There have been five types of execution since the introduction of the death penalty: execution squads, execution, deadly gas, electrocution and lethal injection. Although lethal injection is considered to be the most human form of execution, complications can still occur.
So how about living on Death Row if you know you'll one day be executed? Their living conditions are not as ideal as you think. Often you lack the basic needs that most of us take for granted. Constantly thinking about your date of execution, complete isolation, and a few other factors can really upset your mind, especially if you've been wrongfully convicted. Let's take a look at 1
10th The Death Penalty
A lot has happened in relation to the death penalty in the last hundred years. (Here is a summary of the Death Penalty .) In 1834, Pennsylvania became the first US state to complete public executions. Twelve years later, Michigan was the first state to abolish the death penalty for all crimes except treason. In 1890, William Kemmler became the first prisoner to be executed by the electric chair in New York. Cyanide gas was introduced in 1924 as a method of execution. In 1977, Oklahoma was the first state to use a lethal injection for executions, and in 1982 Charles Brooks was the first to be executed in this manner.
Velma Barfield of North Carolina was the first woman to be executed since the reintroduction of the death penalty in 1976. Delaware's Billy Bailey was executed as the last person in 1996. In 2009, Ohio became the first state in the state to switch to a single drug instead of the three-drug method that was used for lethal injection. In 2014, Tennessee was the first state to make the electric chair a mandatory death device if no lethal injection drugs are available. The Governor of Utah, Gary Herbert, signed a law in 2015 that allows a firing squad to be used to kill a death row inmate if the lethal injectable medicines are not available.
. 9 Exceptionally Long Waiting Time on Death Row
On death row, time definitely does not go by so fast, and the waiting time becomes much longer over the years . In 1984, the average waiting time of a prisoner from death row to execution was 6 years and 2 months. More recently, in 2013, the average waiting period has increased significantly to 15.5 years and continues to rise. The longest-serving inmate was Jack Alderman. After spending over 33 years on death row, he was executed in 2008 in Georgia.
It is not surprising that several death row inmates died for natural reasons before their execution date has even arrived. One example is Gary Alvord, who was the oldest death candidate in the United States. He died of a brain tumor at the age of 66 in 2013, after spending nearly 40 years on death row in Florida. The oldest prisoner on death row was Leroy Nash, who died in Arizona in 2010 at the age of 94 for natural reasons.
. 8 High Execution Rate
The United States has 7 highest execution rate in the world after China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Pakistan and Egypt. Since 1976, around 1,500 people have been executed in the United States alone.
As far as the United States is concerned, Texas executed most of its prisoners . In 2018, the 13 men executed by the state accounted for more than half of all executions across the country (25). In the past year, there were almost twice as many executions in Texas as in the previous two years, with seven men executed in both 2016 and 2017. More than 220 people still live on death row in this state alone. Since 1976, more than 550 prisoners have been executed, far more than the state of Virginia, which has 113, the second highest number of executions. In fact, over the last 20 years, Texas has not twice been ranked number one for most executions.
. 7 The Death Penalty Is Not the Cheaper Way
Contrary to popular belief, it is not cheaper to kill an inmate than to keep him alive in prison for the rest of his life. Death sentences are much more expensive than non-capital punitive cases – about 70% more expensive in Kansas, about 48% more expensive in Tennessee, three times more expensive in Maryland (about $ 3 million for a death sentence) and costing California about $ 137 million a year compared to $ 11.5 million without the death penalty. (Important Note: These numbers were estimated a few years ago and may have changed since then.)
The most expensive part of a death penalty case is the time before and during the trial. Much of the cost comes from the high work and investigation effort, especially by the prosecutor. Even if there were no appeals after the conviction, it would still be more expensive than cases without a death sentence.
. 6 Many inmates suffer from "death penalty phenomenon"
Many inmates living in death sentences suffer from a disease called " death penalty phenomenon . "In addition, they suffer from the severe death penalty conditions Given the constant thought that they will eventually be executed, it is sufficient to mentally burden the detainees. You can even suffer from PTSD, extreme anxiety and anger.
Death row deaths for years and even decades can affect their mental and physical health, as they are usually trapped in their small cells for up to 23 hours a day. all alone. They are not allowed to participate in education and employment programs offered in prison, and they have restrictions on family visits.
The thought of knowing that someday they will be executed, but unsure when it will happen, is very damaging to the mental condition of the prisoners and sometimes they can not handle it. That's why they try to commit suicide. In fact, many inmates tried to commit suicide in the days and weeks prior to their execution. They have to go through the long legal process, know that they will eventually be executed and wonder how long it will take them to die after administering the medicine and if they will die a painful death … 23 hours a day, 7 Thinking about this stuff week in and week out is enough to make someone suffer mentally.
. 5 Lack of Basic Needs
In addition to the "death penalty" phenomena, many inmates also lack the basic need for to keep them mentally and physically healthy. Although life on death row is not meant to be luxurious, they often lack very basic needs. As a rule, prisoners leave their cells for only one hour a day (and four hours a week for sports). The rest of the time they are isolated in their small living room, which has a bed, a toilet, a washbasin and sometimes a desk and chair full in it.
Living in this tiny space for decades is enough to make someone claustrophobic. In addition, sometimes they are only allowed to take a shower every two days. They sleep on steel beds, have no hot water, they get bad and nutritious food, they have no climate control, when it is hot in the summer and cold in the winter, and they are often excluded from religious services.
. 4 Death Row is not just for adult men
When we think of death candidates, we usually imagine they're all men. That's not always the case. Women can commit as vile and vicious crimes as men. Since April 1, 2019, 54 women are living on death row. Since the reintroduction of the death penalty in 1976, a total of 16 women have been executed.
Young people were also on death row – 22 of them were executed between 1976 and 2005 for crimes committed during their youth. In 2005, however, the Supreme Court ruled that it was unconstitutional to have executed juvenile offenders (Roper v. Simmons), meaning that offenders under the age of 18 are exempted from capital punishment. The scientific findings on the development of the brain of adolescents at a younger age have also contributed to the decision of the Court.
. 3 Innocent People on Death Row
While inmates often claim their innocence, surprisingly many innocents were sent to death row. But with new DNA tests and weak cases leading to acquittals of the retrial and charges, some inmates waiting to be executed have been released. In fact, new DNA evidence has helped more than 20 death row inmates relieved since 1992 in the United States.
It is estimated that about 4.1% of all death row inmates are actually innocent, but unfortunately for them, more than half of them are executed before they get the chance to be relieved. Since 1973, approximately 200 innocent people have been executed, an average of 4.5 deaths per year of innocent prisoners. On the other hand, since 1973, a total of 165 prisoners were released while waiting on death row – 29 of them were located only in the state of Florida.
. 2 Executions Can Go Wrong
To make executions more humane, the process of lethal injection became the method by which death row prisoners would eventually die. Unfortunately, the execution process is not always easy for some of them and sometimes things can go very wrong. A prime example was in 2014, when the inmate from Arizona Joseph Wood received a total of 15 injections over a period of nearly two hours before finally dying. Not surprisingly, he was said to have suffered all the time as he gasped and gasped for air.
In the same year, Ohio prisoner Dennis McGuire was given a new combination of medications, resulting in a total of 24 minutes before he died. And for at least ten of those minutes, he seemed to gasp.
Another example was in 2014, when Clayton Lockett, captured in Oklahoma, took 43 minutes to die after being injected with the deadly drugs. Apparently, the infusion was not properly placed in his arm, which prolonged the process of death. In these 43 minutes, in addition to his painful moaning, he should be flung around on the stretcher and twisted.
. 1 The death penalty does not make the public safer
It would make sense to believe that a state with the death penalty would prevent people from killing, but in fact the opposite is true. In fact, there are much lower homicides in states without capital punishment than in states with capital punishment.
Between 2000 and 2016, an average of 33% more murders were committed in states with capital punishment than in other states without it. According to the graph (which can be seen here ), since 1990 there have been significantly more murders in states with capital punishment. In some of these states without the death penalty, annual homicide rates are often below the national average. It seems that the definitive death penalty for committing indescribable crimes has not discouraged many of the toughest criminals in these states.
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