Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
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02-07-2013, 06:38 PM (This post was last modified: 03-07-2013 08:37 PM by Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver.)
Video Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
While one can argue about capital punishment from a deterrence perspective or whether it is a just punishment for certain terrible crimes, one cannot argue the cost of the death penalty is far more expensive than locking up crooks and throwing away the keys.

From Deathpenalty.org

The death penalty is much more expensive than life without parole because the Constitution requires a long and complex judicial process for capital cases. This process is needed in order to ensure that innocent men and woman are not executed for crimes they did not commit, and even with these protections the risk of executing an innocent person can not be completely eliminated.

If the death penalty was replaced with a sentence of Life Without the Possibility of Parole*, which costs millions less and also ensures that the public is protected while eliminating the risk of an irreversible mistake, the money saved could be spent on programs that actually improve the communities in which we live. The millions of dollars in savings could be spent on: education, roads, police officers and public safety programs, after-school programs, drug and alcohol treatment, child abuse prevention programs, mental health services, and services for crime victims and their families.

*More than 3500 men and women have received this sentence in California since 1978 and NOT ONE has been released, except those few individuals who were able to prove their innocence.

California could save $1 billion over five years by replacing the death penalty with permanent imprisonment.

California taxpayers pay $90,000 more per death row prisoner each year than on prisoners in regular confinement.

California Cost Studies:
Executing the Will of the Voters: A Roadmap to Mend or End the California Legislature's Multi-Billion-Dollar Death Penalty Debacle (2011)

California has spent more than $4 billion on capital punishment since it was reinstated in 1978 (about $308 million for each of the 13 executions carried out)

California spends an additional $184 million on the death penalty per year because of the additional costs of capital trials, enhanced security on death row, and legal representation.

The study’s authors predict that the cost of the death penalty will reach $9 billion by 2030.
Read the report.


Report of the California Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice (2008)

"The additional cost of confining an inmate to death row, as compared to the maximum security prisons where those sentenced to life without possibility of parole ordinarily serve their sentences, is $90,000 per year per inmate. With California's current death row population of 670, that accounts for $63.3 million annually."

Using conservative rough projections, the Commission estimates the annual costs of the present (death penalty) system to be $137 million per year.

The cost of the present system with reforms recommended by the Commission to ensure a fair process would be $232.7 million per year.

The cost of a system in which the number of death-eligible crimes was significantly narrowed would be $130 million per year.

The cost of a system which imposes a maximum penalty of lifetime incarceration instead of the death penalty would be $11.5 million per year.
Read the report.


ACLU of Northern California's Report "The Hidden Death Tax" (2008)
In "The Hidden Death Tax" the ACLU-NC reveals for the first time some of the hidden costs of California's death penalty, based on records of actual trial expenses and state budgets.

The report reveals that:

California taxpayers pay at least $117 million each year post-trial seeking execution of the people currently on death row;

Executing all of the people currently on death row, or waiting for them to die there of other causes, will cost California an estimated $4 billion more than if they had been sentenced to die in prison of disease, injury, or old age;

California death penalty trials have cost as much as $10.9 million.

Conclusion:
The report concludes that not enough is being done to track death penalty expenses. The report recommends tracking more of these costs to provide greater transparency and accountability for a system that costs California hundreds of millions. Finally, this report demonstrate that California's death penalty is arbitrary, unnecessary and a waste of critical resources.
Read the report.

Los Angeles Times Study Finds California Spends $250 Million per Execution (2005)

Key Points:


The California death penalty system costs taxpayers more than $114 million a year beyond the cost of simply keeping the convicts locked up for life. (This figure does not take into account additional court costs for post-conviction hearings in state and federal courts, estimated to exceed several million dollars.)

With 11 executions spread over 27 years, on a per execution basis, California and federal taxpayers have paid more than $250 million for each execution.

It costs approximately $90,000 more a year to house an inmate on death row, than in the general prison population or $57.5 million annually.

The Attorney General devotes about 15% of his budget, or $11 million annually to death penalty cases.

The California Supreme Court spends $11.8 million on appointed counsel for death row inmates.

The Office of the State Public Defender and the Habeas Corpus Resource Center spend a total of $22.3 million on defense for indigent defendants facing death.

The federal court system spends approximately $12 million on defending death row inmates in federal court.

No figures were given for the amount spent by the offices of County District Attorneys on the prosecution of capital cases, however these expenses are presumed to be in the tens of millions of dollars each year.

Source: Tempest, Rone, "Death Row Often Means a Long Life", Los Angeles Times, March 6, 2005. Read the article.



Study Finds Death Penalty More Expensive Than Sentence of Life Without Parole. (1993)

Capital Trials Are Different

Capital punishment in California, as in every other state, is more expensive than a life imprisonment sentence without the opportunity of parole. These costs are not the result of frivolous appeals but rather the result of Constitutionally mandated safeguards that can be summarized as follows:

Juries must be given clear guidelines on sentencing, which result in explicit provisions for what constitutes aggravating and mitigating circumstances.

Defendants must have a dual trial--one to establish guilt or innocence and if guilty a second trial to determine whether or not they would get the death penalty.

Defendants sentenced to death are granted oversight protection in an automatic appeal to the state supreme court.

Constitutional Safeguards

Since there are few defendants who will plead guilty to a capital charge, virtually every death penalty trial becomes a jury trial with all of the following elements:

a more extensive jury selection procedure

a four fold increase in the number of motions filed

a longer, dual trial process

more investigators and expert testimony

more lawyers specializing in death penalty litigation

automatic, mandatory appeals

Conclusions

This study concludes that the enhanced cost of trying a death penalty case is at least $1.25 million more than trying a comparable murder case resulting in a sentence of life in prison without parole. These savings are entirely at the trial level and do not take into consideration the cost to county taxpayers (as they share the burden with other California citizens) for the mandatory state supreme court appeals and potential federal appeals.

Source:

This study titled "Capital Punishment at What Price: An Analysis of the Cost Issue in a Strategy to Abolish the Death Penalty" was completed by David Erickson in 1993 in the form of a Master's Thesis for U.C. Berkeley's Graduate School of Public Policy. The complete study can be found in the U.C. Berkeley Graduate Library or can be obtained by contacting Death Penalty Focus.
Read the full study.

Cost Study by the Sacramento Bee (1988)

Key Points:

A study done by the Sacramento Bee (March 28, 1988) suggests that California would save $90 million per year if it were to abolish the death penalty.

$78 million of these expenses are occurred at the trial level and would not be reduced by shortening appeals.


This was the key reason that New Jersey abolished the Death Penalty in 2012. California nearly did the same with Prop 34 on the Nov 2012 ballot, but it was turned down by CA Citizens.

Even Texas, a state that recently carried out its 500th execution since Gregg v Georgia in 1976, and is very efficient at the administration of the death penalty, spends twice as much per execution as it does on prisoners serving LWOP.

From The Death Penalty Information Center:

County estimates in Texas indicate that the death penalty system is much more expensive than sentencing inmates to life imprisonment. Gray County spent nearly $1 million seeking the death penalty against Levi King, even though he pleaded guilty to murder. Moreover, these costs do not include the cost of appeals, which will further increase the cost of the capital case, nor the costs of cases in which the death penalty is sought but not given. By comparison, a non-death penalty murder case in nearby Lubbock County typically costs about $3,000, court officials estimate. The average cost to house an inmate in Texas prisons is $47.50 per day, according to Michelle Lyons, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Thus it would cost about $17,340 to house an inmate for a year and $693,500 for 40 years, far less than even part of the death penalty costs. The regional public defender's office estimates that just the legal costs for a death penalty case from indictment to execution are $1.2 million. Lubbock County Criminal District Attorney Matt Powell said, “I don’t dispute that it’s more expensive,” but said he never takes cost into account when deciding whether to seek the death penalty.

Up next in Stop the Welfare State Vol. V: How we waste $3 billion a year fighting The Drug War.

"IN THRUST WE TRUST"

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02-07-2013, 06:53 PM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
(02-07-2013 06:38 PM)Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver Wrote:  While one can argue about capital punishment from a deterrence perspective or whether it is a just punishment for certain terrible crimes, one cannot argue the cost of the death penalty is far more expensive than locking up crooks and throwing away the keys.

From Deathpenalty.org

The death penalty is much more expensive than life without parole because the Constitution requires a long and complex judicial process for capital cases. This process is needed in order to ensure that innocent men and woman are not executed for crimes they did not commit, and even with these protections the risk of executing an innocent person can not be completely eliminated.

If the death penalty was replaced with a sentence of Life Without the Possibility of Parole*, which costs millions less and also ensures that the public is protected while eliminating the risk of an irreversible mistake, the money saved could be spent on programs that actually improve the communities in which we live. The millions of dollars in savings could be spent on: education, roads, police officers and public safety programs, after-school programs, drug and alcohol treatment, child abuse prevention programs, mental health services, and services for crime victims and their families.

*More than 3500 men and women have received this sentence in California since 1978 and NOT ONE has been released, except those few individuals who were able to prove their innocence.

California could save $1 billion over five years by replacing the death penalty with permanent imprisonment.

California taxpayers pay $90,000 more per death row prisoner each year than on prisoners in regular confinement.

California Cost Studies:
Executing the Will of the Voters: A Roadmap to Mend or End the California Legislature's Multi-Billion-Dollar Death Penalty Debacle (2011)

California has spent more than $4 billion on capital punishment since it was reinstated in 1978 (about $308 million for each of the 13 executions carried out)

California spends an additional $184 million on the death penalty per year because of the additional costs of capital trials, enhanced security on death row, and legal representation.

The study’s authors predict that the cost of the death penalty will reach $9 billion by 2030.
Read the report.


Report of the California Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice (2008)

"The additional cost of confining an inmate to death row, as compared to the maximum security prisons where those sentenced to life without possibility of parole ordinarily serve their sentences, is $90,000 per year per inmate. With California's current death row population of 670, that accounts for $63.3 million annually."

Using conservative rough projections, the Commission estimates the annual costs of the present (death penalty) system to be $137 million per year.

The cost of the present system with reforms recommended by the Commission to ensure a fair process would be $232.7 million per year.

The cost of a system in which the number of death-eligible crimes was significantly narrowed would be $130 million per year.

The cost of a system which imposes a maximum penalty of lifetime incarceration instead of the death penalty would be $11.5 million per year.
Read the report.


ACLU of Northern California's Report "The Hidden Death Tax" (2008)
In "The Hidden Death Tax" the ACLU-NC reveals for the first time some of the hidden costs of California's death penalty, based on records of actual trial expenses and state budgets.

The report reveals that:

California taxpayers pay at least $117 million each year post-trial seeking execution of the people currently on death row;

Executing all of the people currently on death row, or waiting for them to die there of other causes, will cost California an estimated $4 billion more than if they had been sentenced to die in prison of disease, injury, or old age;

California death penalty trials have cost as much as $10.9 million.

Conclusion:
The report concludes that not enough is being done to track death penalty expenses. The report recommends tracking more of these costs to provide greater transparency and accountability for a system that costs California hundreds of millions. Finally, this report demonstrate that California's death penalty is arbitrary, unnecessary and a waste of critical resources.
Read the report.

Los Angeles Times Study Finds California Spends $250 Million per Execution (2005)

Key Points:


The California death penalty system costs taxpayers more than $114 million a year beyond the cost of simply keeping the convicts locked up for life. (This figure does not take into account additional court costs for post-conviction hearings in state and federal courts, estimated to exceed several million dollars.)

With 11 executions spread over 27 years, on a per execution basis, California and federal taxpayers have paid more than $250 million for each execution.

It costs approximately $90,000 more a year to house an inmate on death row, than in the general prison population or $57.5 million annually.

The Attorney General devotes about 15% of his budget, or $11 million annually to death penalty cases.

The California Supreme Court spends $11.8 million on appointed counsel for death row inmates.

The Office of the State Public Defender and the Habeas Corpus Resource Center spend a total of $22.3 million on defense for indigent defendants facing death.

The federal court system spends approximately $12 million on defending death row inmates in federal court.

No figures were given for the amount spent by the offices of County District Attorneys on the prosecution of capital cases, however these expenses are presumed to be in the tens of millions of dollars each year.

Source: Tempest, Rone, "Death Row Often Means a Long Life", Los Angeles Times, March 6, 2005. Read the article.



Study Finds Death Penalty More Expensive Than Sentence of Life Without Parole. (1993)

Capital Trials Are Different

Capital punishment in California, as in every other state, is more expensive than a life imprisonment sentence without the opportunity of parole. These costs are not the result of frivolous appeals but rather the result of Constitutionally mandated safeguards that can be summarized as follows:

Juries must be given clear guidelines on sentencing, which result in explicit provisions for what constitutes aggravating and mitigating circumstances.

Defendants must have a dual trial--one to establish guilt or innocence and if guilty a second trial to determine whether or not they would get the death penalty.

Defendants sentenced to death are granted oversight protection in an automatic appeal to the state supreme court.

Constitutional Safeguards

Since there are few defendants who will plead guilty to a capital charge, virtually every death penalty trial becomes a jury trial with all of the following elements:

a more extensive jury selection procedure

a four fold increase in the number of motions filed

a longer, dual trial process

more investigators and expert testimony

more lawyers specializing in death penalty litigation

automatic, mandatory appeals

Conclusions

This study concludes that the enhanced cost of trying a death penalty case is at least $1.25 million more than trying a comparable murder case resulting in a sentence of life in prison without parole. These savings are entirely at the trial level and do not take into consideration the cost to county taxpayers (as they share the burden with other California citizens) for the mandatory state supreme court appeals and potential federal appeals.

Source:

This study titled "Capital Punishment at What Price: An Analysis of the Cost Issue in a Strategy to Abolish the Death Penalty" was completed by David Erickson in 1993 in the form of a Master's Thesis for U.C. Berkeley's Graduate School of Public Policy. The complete study can be found in the U.C. Berkeley Graduate Library or can be obtained by contacting Death Penalty Focus.
Read the full study.

Cost Study by the Sacramento Bee (1988)

Key Points:

A study done by the Sacramento Bee (March 28, 1988) suggests that California would save $90 million per year if it were to abolish the death penalty.

$78 million of these expenses are occurred at the trial level and would not be reduced by shortening appeals.


This was the key reason at New Jersey abolished the Death Penalty in 2012. California nearly did the same with Prop on the Nov 2012 ballot, but it was turned down by CA Citizens.

Even Texas, a state that recently carried out its 500th execution since Gregg v Georgia in 1976, spends twice as much per execution as it does on prisoners serving LWOP.

From The Death Penalty Information Center:

County estimates in Texas indicate that the death penalty system is much more expensive than sentencing inmates to life imprisonment. Gray County spent nearly $1 million seeking the death penalty against Levi King, even though he pleaded guilty to murder. Moreover, these costs do not include the cost of appeals, which will further increase the cost of the capital case, nor the costs of cases in which the death penalty is sought but not given. By comparison, a non-death penalty murder case in nearby Lubbock County typically costs about $3,000, court officials estimate. The average cost to house an inmate in Texas prisons is $47.50 per day, according to Michelle Lyons, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Thus it would cost about $17,340 to house an inmate for a year and $693,500 for 40 years, far less than even part of the death penalty costs. The regional public defender's office estimates that just the legal costs for a death penalty case from indictment to execution are $1.2 million. Lubbock County Criminal District Attorney Matt Powell said, “I don’t dispute that it’s more expensive,” but said he never takes cost into account when deciding whether to seek the death penalty.

Up next in Stop the Welfare State Vol. 5: How we waste $3 billion a year fighting The Drug War.

There is nothing about the death penalty that is anything other than vindictive. You kill someone we gonna kill ya back. It is medieval and repulsive and above all else ineffective. It would be abhorrent even if it wasn't demonstrably racist, which it is. This is one of the very few issues that the Catholic Church is on the right side of.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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02-07-2013, 06:56 PM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
(02-07-2013 06:53 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  There is nothing about the death penalty that is anything other than vindictive. You kill someone we gonna kill ya back. It is medieval and repulsive and above all else ineffective. It would be abhorrent even if it wasn't demonstrably racist, which it is. This is one of the very few issues that the Catholic Church is on the right side of.

Well any form of justice does employ revenge in it. After all, the courts ARE the ultimate ass kickers, settling all accounts on an issue with finality.

"IN THRUST WE TRUST"

"We were conservative Jews and that meant we obeyed God's Commandments until His rules became a royal pain in the ass."

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02-07-2013, 07:03 PM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
(02-07-2013 06:56 PM)Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver Wrote:  
(02-07-2013 06:53 PM)Revenant77x Wrote:  There is nothing about the death penalty that is anything other than vindictive. You kill someone we gonna kill ya back. It is medieval and repulsive and above all else ineffective. It would be abhorrent even if it wasn't demonstrably racist, which it is. This is one of the very few issues that the Catholic Church is on the right side of.

Well any form of justice does employ revenge in it. After all, the courts ARE the ultimate ass kickers, settling all accounts on an issue with finality.

There is an argument there about rehabilitation but the US is not good at that. If we would stop the pointless drug war we could get better. Speaking of which that better be one of your welfare state posts.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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03-07-2013, 12:54 AM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
I-tay oeasn't-day atter-may if-ay it-ay osts-cay ore-may or-ay ess-lay, its-ay arbaric-bay ecause-bay ere-thay is-ay always-ay at-thay ossibility-pay at-thay e-thay erson-pay is-ay innocent-ay.
Eople-pay ave-hay een-bay illed-kay y-bay e-thay ate-stay efor-bay and-ay ater-lay it-ay urned-tay out-ay ey-thay ere-way innocent-ay.
Ou-yay an-cay et-lay omeone-say out-ay of-ay ison-pray, ou-yay ant-cay unkill-ay omeone-say.

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03-07-2013, 06:36 AM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
(03-07-2013 12:54 AM)earmuffs Wrote:  I-tay oeasn't-day atter-may if-ay it-ay osts-cay ore-may or-ay ess-lay, its-ay arbaric-bay ecause-bay ere-thay is-ay always-ay at-thay ossibility-pay at-thay e-thay erson-pay is-ay innocent-ay.
Eople-pay ave-hay een-bay illed-kay y-bay e-thay ate-stay efor-bay and-ay ater-lay it-ay urned-tay out-ay ey-thay ere-way innocent-ay.
Ou-yay an-cay et-lay omeone-say out-ay of-ay ison-pray, ou-yay ant-cay unkill-ay omeone-say.

Tell me something: is it equally barbaric when someone dies while serving a life sentence only to be exonerated posthumously? That happens quite often as well.

See the only real argument I've ever found about the death penalty is whether the state should be allowed to forfeit a life as punishment for a crime. Everything else is more or less an indictment of problems with the justice system, not just the death penalty alone.

"IN THRUST WE TRUST"

"We were conservative Jews and that meant we obeyed God's Commandments until His rules became a royal pain in the ass."

- Joel Chastnoff, The 188th Crybaby Brigade
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03-07-2013, 06:52 AM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
(03-07-2013 06:36 AM)Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver Wrote:  
(03-07-2013 12:54 AM)earmuffs Wrote:  I-tay oeasn't-day atter-may if-ay it-ay osts-cay ore-may or-ay ess-lay, its-ay arbaric-bay ecause-bay ere-thay is-ay always-ay at-thay ossibility-pay at-thay e-thay erson-pay is-ay innocent-ay.
Eople-pay ave-hay een-bay illed-kay y-bay e-thay ate-stay efor-bay and-ay ater-lay it-ay urned-tay out-ay ey-thay ere-way innocent-ay.
Ou-yay an-cay et-lay omeone-say out-ay of-ay ison-pray, ou-yay ant-cay unkill-ay omeone-say.

Tell me something: is it equally barbaric when someone dies while serving a life sentence only to be exonerated posthumously? That happens quite often as well.

See the only real argument I've ever found about the death penalty is whether the state should be allowed to forfeit a life as punishment for a crime. Everything else is more or less an indictment of problems with the justice system, not just the death penalty alone.

Of-ay ourse-cay, obably-pray ore-may o-say in-ay act-fay.
Ut-bay ith-way ife-lay ou-yay ave-hay ore-may ime-tay o-tay etermine-day if-ay a-ay istake-may as-way ade-may.
I-ay ont-day ink-thay e-thay ate-stay ould-shay ave-hay e-thay ower-pay o-tay ake-tay omeones-say ife-lay.
Orry-say or-fay e-thay ig-pay atin-lay y-bay e-thay ay-way Arlo-cay.

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03-07-2013, 08:27 AM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
I will allow that there are some in this world that I would defend or revenge unto my own or their offenders death.

That should not allow the state to do so. The state or collective or whatever should refrain from such behavior.

State behavior should be much more constrained than personal behavior.

As stated in the OP the cost of capital punishment alone should cause the public concern.

When recently given the chance I voted against capital punishment in California, as is often the case my vote was in the minority.
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03-07-2013, 04:44 PM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
I too think we should make killing people cheaper for the tax payer.
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03-07-2013, 05:03 PM
RE: Stop the Welfare State, Vol. IV: End The Death Penalty
This is a compelling argument, but it would only bring back the guillotine. There're few things that can quench the blood thirst of a society and usually it involves more blood

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