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Focus on the Death Penalty

Focus on the Death Penalty: Index


 

Index
Alaska
History
Statistics
Death
  Row
The
  Debate
Issues
Organizations
International
   
24 March 2005: The Death Penalty Statistics page has been completely updated & all links corrected.
A number of attempts at introducing capital punishment to the Alaska criminal justice system have occurred in recent years. The purpose of this site is to provide Alaska citizens and other members of the public with a source of information on the death penalty so that they can make informed decisions on this important issue. (See Alaska & the Death Penalty for historical information and updates on the progress of the death penalty debate in Alaska.) We hope that others will also find the site useful.
     See the site overview for a quick look at what you will find on this site. Also on this page are links to general news, indices, and bibliographies on the death penalty.
     This site has been established by the Justice Center at University of Alaska Anchorage as an educational resource. It is not intended to take sides in the debate on the death penalty. Rather, its purpose is to give as full a picture as possible, using existing Internet resources, of the complex issues surrounding capital punishment and its application.
     The site was written and designed by Melissa S. Green, a Publication Specialist at the Justice Center. Suggestions or comments regarding the site or the main Justice Center Web Site are welcomed and may be addressed to Melissa Green at ayjust@uaa.alaska.edu.

Disclaimer: The Justice Center is not responsible for the content of any outside site linked here, nor does a listing here imply an endorsement of a site's opinions or content or a guarantee of its accuracy. For further information about this site, including answers to questions by students, see the FAQ.

Site Overview

Alaska & the Death Penalty
Presents information on he death penalty debate in Alaska, including history and resources on attempts to reintroduce capital punishment in Alaska. Last updated 2 March 2000.

  • History of the Death Penalty in Alaska: Historical information regarding executions which took place in Territorial Alaska prior to its abolition in 1957.
  • Alaska State Legislature: The Alaska Legislature has considered a number of bills in the past several years which would reinstate the death penalty for specified crimes. Also provided is detailed information on Senate Bill 60, currently under consideration, which if passed would place a death penalty advisory vote on the November 1998 ballot.

History & Recent Developments
Provides a history of the death penalty in the U.S. since 1930 and links to significant U.S. Supreme Court decisions on capital punishment and documents on recent developments in the status of the death penalty nationally. Last updated 3 March 2000.

  • The Death Penalty in the United States: A brief history of the death penalty in the U.S. since 1930, when death penalty statistics began to be collected on a regular basis. This history emphasize death penalty statistics and the constitutional history of the death penalty.
  • Selected U.S. Supreme Court Decisions: Links to important decisions since the 1972 Furman decision.
  • Recent Developments & Future of the Death Penalty: Links to reports from the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions, Amnesty International, and the Death Penalty Information Center on recent developments and the future of the death penalty in the U.S.
  • Historical Resources: Other historical resources on the death penalty in the U.S. and England.

Death Penalty Statistics
provides statistical information on the death penalty and its application in the U.S., including the number of executions and number of prisoners on the nation's death rows. See The International Context for international statistics and Death Row for state-by-state information. Last updated 2 March 2000.

Death Row
links to state prison death row information, sites about life on death row and death row prisoners, and methods of execution. Last updated 30 Mar 2000.

  • Death Row: Summary Information: Summary information on the status of the death penalty in the U.S.; statistics by state on executions in the United States since 1930 and persons under sentence of death.
  • State Prison Death Rows: Official death penalty information and statistics, execution procedures, death penalty information from other sources, and historical information on the death penalty in U.S. states which have a death penalty.
  • Life on Death Row: Resources on life in the death house and individual condemned prisoners.
  • Methods of Execution: About the five methods of execution currently authorized by states and the federal government: lethal injection, electrocution, gas chamber, firing squad, and hanging.

The Death Penalty Debate
Introduces the debate on the death penalty with a number of sites providing arguments on both the retentionist and abolitionist sides of the issue, including law enforcement and religious viewpoints. Last updated 2 March 2000.

  • Introducing the Debate: Resources which present both sides of the death penalty debate in the U.S.
  • Law Enforcement Views: Pro and con views are both represented here.
  • Religious Positions: Currently, statements on the death penalty from the Catholic, Protestant, and Islamic religious traditions are represented, as are links to biblical verses touching on the death penalty.

Specific Issues
Provides a more in-depth look at relevent arguments on the cost of the death penalty, the possibility of executing innocent persons. abitrary application of the death penalty, including allegations about racial disparity and unequal justice, and other issues. Last updated 2 March 2000.

  • Deterrence: Contrasting views on whether the death penalty deters would-be criminals from committing murder.
  • Retribution & Justice for Murder Victims: Addresses the pro-death penalty argument that murderers should be executed in retribution for their crimes and that such retribution serves justice for murder victims and their survivors.
  • Executing the Innocent: Addresses abolitionist concerns regarding the possibility of executing innocent people.
  • Limiting Appeals & Habeas Corpus Reform: Contrasting views on whether limiting appeals for persons convicted of capital crimes is advisable.
  • Cost of the Death Penalty: Studies on the subject are fairly consistent in concluding that the death penalty is extremely expensive, more expensive even than life imprisonment without possibility of parole.
  • Alternative Sentencing: The chief alternative to the death penalty proposed is life imprisonment without possibility of parole.
  • Fairness of the Death Penalty: Addresses arguments about unfair and arbitrary application of the death penalty, including arguments regarding racial disparities and the inadequacy of indigent legal defense.
  • Moratorium on the Death Penalty: The American Bar Association, Amnesty International, and the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions have called for a moratorium on executions in the U.S. until inequities in the application of the death penalty can be addressed.
  • Specific Populations: Resources related to specific death row populations, including women, juveniles, mentally retarded persons, and insane persons.
  • Cruel & Unusual Punishment: Contrasting views on whether the death penalty constitutes "cruel and unusual" punishment in violation of the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Links to relevant statutory and case law are also provided here.

Organizations & Sites, Pro & Con
Gives links to organizations and web sites devoted to advocating either abolition or retention of the death penalty. See also The Debate: Religious Positions for links to religious sites advocating for or against the death penalty. Last updated 7 March 2000.

The International Context
Provides links to international treaties and protocols on the death penalty and other resources demonstrating how other nations view the death penalty. Last updated 3 March 2000.


General

News
Sites linked here provide news updates on the death penalty. For more in-depth reports on recent developments in the death penalty in the past few years, see History & Recent Developments: Recent Developments & Future of the Death Penalty.

General Indices to Death Penalty Information

Bibliographies on the Death Penalty


Green, Melissa S. ( 24-Mar-2005 ). "Focus on the Death Penalty: Index." In Melissa S. Green, compiler (1998-2009), Focus on the Death Penalty (website). Justice Center, University of Alaska Anchorage. <http://justice.uaa.alaska.edu/death/index.html> (accessed date).

[This is a suggested citation style for students. For further info, see FAQ: Citing this Website.]


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