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Calling for a Moratorium on Capital Prosecutions and Executons
By Carmen D. Hernandez
President's Column columns.
Two important events occurred the last week of September, just as the
Supreme Court was to begin this term. The first was a final report1 of a
30-month study by the American Bar Association on Ohio’s death penalty
system, in which the study group found the state in full compliance with
only 4 out of 93 protocols developed by the ABA to assess death penalty
jurisprudence. The second was the Supreme Court’s announcement the next
day that it would hear Baze v. Rees, an Eighth Amendment civil rights
challenge to Kentucky’s lethal injection protocols.2 Counsel
for the two petitioners is NACDL member David M. Barron of the
distinguished Kentucky Department of Public Advocacy. In the days that
followed, NACDL issued a statement calling once again for an immediate
national moratorium on executions and capital trials.
The four-score problems the ABA identified in the Ohio system run
through death penalty systems throughout the country. A number of the
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