U.S. Death Penalty

Could Manuel Velez be the 13th Prisoner Exonerated from Texas’s Death Row?

Could Manuel Velez be the 13th Prisoner Exonerated from Texas’s Death Row?

By Brian Stull, ACLU Capital Punishment Project at 2:31pm
Imagine you are caring for a toddler and suddenly he stops breathing.  You quickly get him medical aid, but it’s too late: the child dies at the hospital where medical personnel were unable to revive him.  That would be a horrific nightmare for anyone, but things got even worse for Manuel Velez when this happened to him in Brownsville, Texas, on Halloween in 2005.
New Film Highlights the Gross Injustices of the West Memphis Three Case

New Film Highlights the Gross Injustices of the West Memphis Three Case

By Anna Arceneaux, Staff Attorney, ACLU Capital Punishment Project at 3:44pm

In June 1993, Damien Echols, 18, Jason Baldwin, 16, and Jessie Misskelley, 17, who would come to be known as the “West Memphis Three,” were wrongfully arrested for the murders of three young boys in the small Arkansas town of West Memphis,…

Replace the Death Penalty in California

Replace the Death Penalty in California

By Rachel Myers, ACLU at 2:55pm

Imagine for a minute that all the public busses in California sat dormant in a parking lot, never to run again. Imagine that the public schools sent all the kids home for good. Imagine also that state’s hospitals shuttered their doors and turned…

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

By Alex Stamm, ACLU Center for Justice at 10:43am

Today, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate of any country in the world. With over 2.3 million men and women living behind bars, our imprisonment rate is the highest it’s ever been in U.S. history. And yet, our criminal justice system…

VICTORY! One Less Person Faces Execution in Alabama

VICTORY! One Less Person Faces Execution in Alabama

By Anna Arceneaux, Staff Attorney, ACLU Capital Punishment Project at 5:13pm

One less person faces possible death at the hands of Alabama’s arbitrary capital punishment system, after the State agreed to stop seeking the death penalty for ACLU client LaSamuel Gamble late last week. Gamble, who has been on death row for…

Texas Court Upholds Death Sentence of Innocent Man Although "There is Something Very Wrong" with Case Against Him

Texas Court Upholds Death Sentence of Innocent Man Although "There is Something Very Wrong" with Case Against Him

By Brian Stull, ACLU Capital Punishment Project at 10:06am

With an opinion yesterday from the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, ACLU client Max Soffar moves a step closer to an unjust execution.  And, little more than one year after the execution of Troy Davis, our system moves closer to another miscarriage…

A Good Ride from Death Row

A Good Ride from Death Row

By Denny LeBoeuf, Capital Punishment Project at 5:17pm

Friday morning, September 28th, Damon Thibodeaux woke up on Death Row. By early afternoon he was a free man, walking out of Louisiana State Penitentiary after 16 years imprisonment for a crime he did not commit. He was the 141st person exonerated after…

Child Predators, Cheating Prosecutors and Terry Williams: How Pennsylvania Is Poised to Execute a Victim of Horrific Sexual Violence Despite the State’s Own Bad Acts

Child Predators, Cheating Prosecutors and Terry Williams: How Pennsylvania Is Poised to Execute a Victim of Horrific Sexual Violence Despite the State’s Own Bad Acts

By Tanya Greene, Advocacy and Policy Counsel, ACLU at 12:52pm

Here we go again – but, wait, this is Pennsylvania, not Texas or Florida, which have been known to execute individuals despite evidence supporting innocence and/or horrifying trauma histories and major mental health and intellectual deficits. …

Justice for Reggie Clemons: Not Another Troy Davis

Justice for Reggie Clemons: Not Another Troy Davis

By Tanya Greene, Advocacy and Policy Counsel, ACLU at 5:02pm

Monday, a “special master” in St. Louis begins review of the case of Reggie Clemons to determine if his trial was fair and his death sentence is just.   Reggie Clemons is on Missouri’s death row for murders he did not commit.

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

Breaking the Addiction to Incarceration: Weekly Highlights

By Alex Stamm, ACLU Center for Justice at 2:27pm

Today, the U.S. has the highest incarceration rate of any country in the world. With over 2.3 million men and women living behind barsour imprisonment rate is the highest it’s ever been in U.S. history.

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