Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Uncruel and Usual Capital Punishment, Part Two


As time has elapsed, jurisdictions that support capital punishment have changed the methods by which the sentence is carried out. Here is the history of capital punishment methods in Indiana, for example:

In Indiana prior to 1913, all executions were by hanging. From 1913 through 1994, all executions were by electric chair. Since 1995, all executions have been by lethal injection.

The website (hosted by the prosecuting attorney of Clark County, Indiana) proceeds to discuss the methods in the other jurisdictions:

In the 38 states and federal government that currently have death penalty statutes, five different methods of execution are prescribed: Lethal Injection, Electrocution, Lethal Gas, Firing Squad, and Hanging. The vast majority of jurisdictions provide for execution by lethal injection. 20 jurisdictions provide for alternative methods of execution, contingent upon the choice of the inmate, the date of the execution or sentence, or the possibility of the method being held unconstitutional. Only one state does not have lethal injection as a primary or optional method of execution. Nebraska is the only state that provides for electrocution as the sole method of execution. No states provide for Lethal Gas, Hanging, or Firing Squad as the sole method of execution.

The website then proceeds to discuss various methods of execution. These are outlined in subsequent blog posts:

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