Illinois Governor Ends Death Penalty, Commutes 15 Sentences
Governor Pat Quinn of Illinois has signed into law a ban on that state’s death penalty, effective July 1. Quinn also commuted the sentences of the 15 prisoners on death row, who will serve life in prison without parole.
“Fellow citizens, we cannot escape history,” the Democratic governor said after he signed the bill. “I think it’s the right and just thing to abolish the death penalty.”
Illinois last performed an execution in 1999. In 2000, then-Gov. George Ryan placed a moratorium on executions after a series of death row inmates were exonerated.
Those who wanted Quinn to veto the bill, including former Chicago Mayor Richard Daley, say DNA testing has made wrongful executions less likely. But do we want the state in the killing business?Click here for reuse options!
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