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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Court Lets Stand Repeal of CT Death Penalty

By Mark Pazniokas

The state Supreme Court today declined to reverse itself in a 2015 ruling that eliminated the last vestige of capital punishment in Connecticut – the sentences facing 11 men on death row when the legislature repealed the death penalty for future crimes.

The 5-2 ruling means an end to death penalty, a punishment the General Assembly prospectively repealed in 2012 at the urging of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy. It was delivered in a terse two-paragraph per curiam decision, with three longer concurrences and two dissents.

In a 4-3 decision in August, the court lifted the death sentences of the 11 men who had been sentenced prior to the legislative repeal, concluding that carrying out the sentences “would violate the state constitutional prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment.” They wrote that the death penalty “no longer comports with contemporary standards of decency.”

The retirement of one of the four justices and an appeal brought by the state led to an unusual reconsideration of a major decision by the court.

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Posted 05/26/16 at 11:52 AM  Permalink


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