Posted on 3/16/20

The death penalty is a controversial issue in the United States and has a complicated history. In today’s world, the United States is one of the 58 countries that use the death penalty, and it is the only western country that still continues this practice. 

However, the death penalty is a punishment that depends on each individual state of the United States. Currently, 19 states do not practice it and only in four of them the governor has agreed to an indefinite moratorium. There is much controversy on this subject in the United States and in the world. Before examining the policy around the death penalty, it is important to examine its history in the United States.

31 States of the 50 United States Still Allow the Death Penalty

In some states, the electric chair is still an alternative and, although it is often considered more cruel than lethal injection, at least three people have chosen to be executed recently by this method. Hanging or shooting are still alternatives in some states like Washington, where all the prisoners except three have gone to the gallows.

Only lethal injection is allowed in the state of Texas for the death penalty, though the electric chair was allowed until 1964.

U.S. Death Penalty Statistics

  • As of January 1, 2015, over 3,000 people were on death row. On the other hand, according to the DPIC (Death Penalty Information Center), 5,493 people were on death row in 2000.

  •  Of the 1,411 executions carried out since 1976, when the death penalty was introduced in the United States, 15 took place in that year. According to DPIC, a total of 25 were carried out in 2014, 39 in 2013, 43 in 2012 and 2011, 46 in 2010, and 52 in 2009. The record year was 1999 when 98 executions were carried out.

  • 154 men and women were found innocent on death row in 26 states, according to the DPIC. 

  • According to a recent Pew Center survey, opinions in favor of the death penalty have dropped. In 1971, 49% of people supported the death penalty and in 2015, the support of the death penalty had decreased to 42%. 

  • The lack of products needed to prepare the famous cocktail is causing countries a headache as pharmaceutical companies refuse to supply or export barbiturates for law enforcement purposes.

State of Texas Death Penalty Statistics

Since 1982, 567 people have been executed in Texas. The executions peaked in 2000 when 40 people were put to death. Seven executions are scheduled to take place in 2020 in Texas, although death sentences have been in the single digits for the past five years in the state. In 2019, just four new death sentences were given. 

Contact an Experienced Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Today

If you are being charged with a crime, especially one that could put you on death row, it is imperative that you have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side. Contact the attorneys at Abel Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.


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