U.S. resumes execution of inmates on federal death row
The U.S. government has just reinstated the death penalty, and scheduled the execution of five convicted criminals.
WASHINGTON D.C. — The U.S. federal government has ordered the reinstatement of the death penalty for the first time in over 16 years.
CNN reports that U.S. Attorney General Wiliam Barr has directed the Bureau of Prisons to schedule the execution of five inmates convicted of violent crimes against children and the elderly.
The men will be executed in December 2019 and January 2020 at the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana.
According to the Death Penalty Information Center, capital punishment is currently legal in 29 states. There are 2,673 death row inmates, with California detaining the most."
"The federal government also retains the death penalty, and has 62 inmates in federal death row.
So far, though, only three federal inmates have been put to death since the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1988.
The most recent was in 2003, when Louis Jones was executed for the 1995 kidnapping and murder of 19 year-old army private Tracie McBride.
Per Barr's direction, the three-drug procedure previously used in federal executions will be replaced with a single drug, pentobarbital.
According to the BBC, pentobarbital is a potent sedative which slows down the body, including nerves in the brain, to the point of death.
The New York Times reports while public support for death penalty has been dwindling, President Trump has long been a supporter of it, even declaring last year that drug dealers should be put to death.
According to the BBC, he thinks convicted criminals are treated too gently, and given too many chances to appeal their sentences.
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