Research Paper on Capital Punishment in America

The capital punishment in the United States of America has been debated. More than 15 000 people are believed to have been executed in the U.S. since 1608, with more than 1100 since the death penalty was reinstated in 1976 after a nine-year hiatus. In 1972, after a historic five-year moratorium, the country’s highest court said the death penalty to be incompatible with the U.S. Constitution, which practically meant that the death penalty could not be imposed as criminal sanctions. A major criticism was that there was arbitrariness in how and when the death penalty was sentenced.

But in 1976, several states have tightened up the rules for how a trial that examined a prosecution that could lead to the death penalty would be carried out. The Supreme Court was pleased with this, and since then, the death penalty has been re-established as punishment for crimes in the United States. Since 1977 (when the last execution was effected in France) the U.S. is the only state in the West to keep the death penalty in practice, although a few other democracies (Japan, India, Taiwan, Botswana and Indonesia) regularly effects executions.

University students writing their research papers on capital punishment in the United States should know that about a third of all death sentences awarded in the United States, eventually led to execution. 18 of the 35 states that use the death penalty (2009) have executed ten death sentences or more during the last thirty years. Texas is clearly the most consistent applier and has executed almost half of all executions in this period, all by lethal injection, which states that the first jurisdiction in the world adopted the statute book in 1977 and in effect in 1982.

On 2 December 2005 at 15.02 local time the thousandth prisoner was executed since the death penalty was reinstated in 1976, it was Kenneth Lee Boyd in North Carolina who was executed with a lethal injection. He was sentenced to death for a number of murders in 1988.

Capital punishment is lawful penalty in 33 of the 50 U.S. states. Of these, it is a minority that frequently use of the death penalty. Among the 35 counts, for example, Nebraska, whose Supreme Court annulled the sole method of execution that the state constitution allows. California, with over 50 million inhabitants, has conducted a total of thirteen executions since 1976 and in New York sat alone there was a prisoner on death row for over thirty years before pardon has been formally wrought.

The death penalty is an extreme form of threat to an individual person’s life that is why the capital punishment general preventive effects are studied by criminologists, sociologists, and others. The results have not been clear-cut, but most suggest that this extreme form of punishment does not act as a deterrent. Deterrence only works in crime prevention purposes in cases where the offender is calculating and rational, why deterrence does not work on serious violent offenders. Most of the serious violent crimes are committed by individuals who are affected or are under the influence of strong emotions. All executions since the early 1960s have been for shrill murder (death penalty for rest of civil crimes, such as rape, was annulled in 2008).

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