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OREGON (USA): GOVERNOR KATE BROWN SIGNS SB 1013 NARROWING USE OF THE DEATH PENALTY

August 5, 2019:

Calling the state’s death penalty “dysfunctional,” “costly,” and “immoral,” Oregon Governor Kate Brown on August 1, 2019 signed a bill significantly limiting the crimes for which capital punishment can be imposed in the state. The new law amends Oregon’s definition of death-eligible “aggravated murder,” reducing the categories of murder punishable by death from 19 to four. The new law restricts the death penalty to cases involving acts of terrorism in which two or more people are killed, premeditated murders of children aged thirteen or younger, prison murders committed by those already incarcerated for aggravated murder, and premediated murders of police or correctional officers. Oregon’s action continues the steady trend away from capital punishment across the American west. Governors in four western states—Oregon, Washington, Colorado, and California—have imposed moratoria on executions this decade, and the Washington Supreme Court struck down its capital-sentencing statute as unconstitutional in November 2018. In 2011, then-Governor John Kitzhaber in 2011 instituted the first death-penalty moratorium, declaring: “I refuse to be a part of this compromised and inequitable system any longer; and I will not allow further executions while I am Governor.” In halting executions in the state, Kitzhaber said, “I am convinced we can find a better solution that keeps society safe, supports the victims of crime and their families and reflects Oregon values.” In 2015, shortly after taking office, Brown extended the state’s execution moratorium. Oregon has not executed anyone in more than two decades. The only two executions it has conducted since executions resumed in the U.S. in 1977 were in 1996 and 1997, and both involved ”volunteers” who had waived their appeals. Thirty-one people are currently on death row in the state, a vast majority of whom could not have been sentenced to death under the new law. “Oregon’s death penalty is dysfunctional. It is costly and immoral,” said Brown in her prepared remarks. “Our state’s criminal justice system continues to impose death sentences, and send people to death row, even as we know that no one has been executed here in a generation.”

(Sources: The Oregonian, KHSU Radio, Associated Press, 01/08/2019)

INDIA: YOUTH GETS DEATH SENTENCE FOR RAPE, MURDER OF NINE-MONTH-OLD
NIGERIA: COURT SENTENCES 2 TO DEATH BY HANGING FOR ROBBERY
MALAYSIA: KING PARDONS 3 INDONESIANS WHO HAD BEEN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING
BANGLADESH: 5 GET DEATH, 6 LIFE TERM IN MURDER CASE
NIGERIA: NOTORIOUS SERIAL KILLER SENTENCED TO DEATH IN KANO
KENYA: TWO SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR ROBBERY AND KIDNAPPING
IRAN: 5 PRISONERS HANGED FOR MURDER CHARGES
PUNTLAND (SOMALIA): MEN WHO KILLED MALTESE PORT MANAGER SENTENCED TO DEATH
INDIA: HATE CRIME IN RAJASTHAN NOW PUNISHABLE BY DEATH PENALTY
JORDAN: MAN AWARDED DEATH PENALTY IN MURDER CASE
IRAN: UPDATES ON THE DJALALI CASE
TAIWAN: ARCHER SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR MURDER OF WOMAN IN TAIPEI'S HUASHAN GRASSLAND
SOMALIA: 2 AL-SHABAB MEMBERS EXECUTED BY GOVERNMENT
THAILAND: WOMAN SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR 2015 MURDER OF JAPANESE PARTNER
IRAN: PRISONER EXECUTED FOR MURDER COMMITTED WHEN HE WAS UNDER THE AGE OF 18
SOMALIA: DAESH TERRORIST SENTENCED TO DEATH
IRANIAN PRISONER SERVING LIFE SENTENCE ESCAPES TO CANADA
JAPAN: 2 DEATH-ROW INMATES HANGED, 1ST EXECUTIONS THIS YEAR
BARBADOS: DEATH ROW INMATE FREED
INDONESIA: FRENCH DRUG SMUGGLER'S DEATH SENTENCE COMMUTED
INDIA: BOMBAY HC COMMUTES DEATH SENTENCE OF TWO CONVICTS
VIETNAM: FOUR SENTENCED TO DEATH FOR DRUG TRAFFICKING
IRAN: 9 SENTENCED TO DEATH OVER ECONOMIC CORRUPTION
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