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Capital Punishment Is Alive And Well In Nevada Despite Protest


Dashing the hopes of anti-capital punishment advocates, Governor Sisolak ended the debate about whether to abolish the death penalty in Nevada as AB395 suffered a final blow.  This comes as Zane Floyd faces an upcoming execution within month, the first in Nevada in well over a decade. Despite pressure from the public and from organizations like the ACLU, the governor believes that capital punishment is a necessary option in extreme cases.

Opposition Facts 

There are a number of issues with capital punishment in this country:

  • The death penalty is applied unevenly across the country, disproportionately impacting poor people and people of color;
  • When victims of crimes are white, the perpetrators are more likely to be sentenced to death than when victims are of color;
  • Police chiefs overwhelmingly agree that capital punishment is not a deterrent to violent crime;
  • Innocent people have been sentenced to death with alarming frequency—with more than 150 death row inmates being exonerated in recent decades.
  • Companies who supply the drugs for these executions frequently do not want their drugs used for this purpose;
  • There is a shortage of drugs available to carry out executions;
  • A number of recent executions have had catastrophic outcomes, with horrendous and lengthy suffering witnessed during the process.
  • Limited resources are wasted fighting for death penalty cases;
  • Capital punishment is a barbaric and antiquated penalty that implies the collective will of society is to execute fellow humans;
  • Civilized countries across the globe have abolished the death penalty—putting America in the company of corrupt and anti-democratic places like China, North Korea Iraq, and others, reducing any sense of legitimacy the U.S. has when it comes to human rights;
  • There are effective alternatives to the death penalty, including life without parole;
  • Corrections personnel involved in executions often suffer from PTSD due to their involvement in the process;
  • Crime victims and their families could be helped with more resources being dedicated to their healing.

Facts Worth Considering 

What do the statistics related to capital punishment tell us?  See for yourself:

  • 10 percent of executed individuals suffer from mental illness, some unable to participate in their trials, others forcibly medicated prior to execution;
  • After a 17-year hiatus in federal executions, ten occurred within less than six months during the Trump administration.
  • In 2020, six prisoners were exonerated from death row due to prosecutorial misconduct that resulted in wrongful convictions;
  • Time served for these six exonerated prisoners ranged from 14 to 37 years, and three of the men had undergone multiple trials in the face of evidence of their innocence;
  • “Junk science” was cited as a factor in at least three of the six death penalty cases;
  • Six new defendants have been sentenced to death in Nevada since 2016.

Death penalty cases continue to plague the courts, despite evidence of ineffective representation, insufficient appellate review, intrusion into Native American tribal sovereignty, racial bias, youth of offenders, mental health issues, and severe childhood trauma of offenders.

Fighting for Justice 

At Lobo Law, our Las Vegas criminal lawyers believe everyone charged with a crime deserves a thorough and vigorous defense.  If you are facing the death penalty or other serious charges, contact us for a confidential consultation today.


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