By Nicole Garwood
To keep it simple, innocent people are dying.
From all those humans being subjected to the embrace of an electric armchair to reduced to mortal guinea pigs used for untested drugs. The number of Innocent people who have lost their lives to capital punishment due to immeasurable amounts of misconduct, racial bias or questionable evidence. The fact is: Immoral, barbaric, groundless and senseless, capital punishment risks the lives of countless innocent exposed to it and must be abolished.
1 in every 24 deaths someone’s innocent.
The US, in 2017 totaled to 160 exonerations since 1973 out of the 1,465 people executed. Later DNA testing revealed 4.1% of those executed were innocent.
That number should be zero! What justice is achieved if it risks endangering the lives of those caught in the crossfire?
In 1995 a young boy named Shareef Cousin was a held on death row at the young age of 17, for a crime he did not commit. During a murder Shareef was playing a recorded basketball game. Moreover, he has driven back home with his teammates and coach afterward. He had an airtight alibi, yet the prosecutor withheld from the jury.
After facing accusations by a woman who, visually impaired, claimed that she “ could never forget that face “, and after 4 years on death row, he was finally exonerated. This was someone’s son, someone’s friend. Another innocent life lost.
Shareef was lucky, but how about the ones who weren’t?
2005 Lena Baker, a colored woman defending herself against an abusive white man. The electric chair
2011 Joe Arridy, mentally disabled and falsely accused of the rape and murder of a 15-year-old highschool girl. Gas chamber
2016 Richard Masterson, involved in a “homicide” as claimed in a botched, unlicensed autopsy. Lethal Injection
Only 3 of many people who shared the same fate as Brian Terrell
December 9th Georgia sent Terrell to die by lethal injection. Took an hour for nurses to locate the vein and, as the drug was delivered he mouthed “ I didn’t do it “.
Accused of murder, his lawyer argued of no physical evidence linked to him, near the scene Terells footprints were located. His sentence? the product of misconduct and false, misleading testimony. The footprints were smaller than his, and out of the 13 fingerprints found none were his.
Furthermore recent studies from the ‘Death Penalty Information center’ reveal that the executions from 1999-2017 have lowered substantially. So why does it still exist? Someone’s family, someone’s friend that could be in danger. In addition it’s losing its popularity amongst the states, so why not just abolish it all together?
This is not the way to justice. This is the way to murder. Innocent people dead.
Of course, there is still a chance the right guy will be caught, to have justice served to the right person. However this unattainable goal, it should be obvious by now. Criminal justice, a human endeavor that’s prone to mistakes. 1,465 people were executed 160 were saved, but what about the ones missed? The ones left behind to rot in a cell awaiting their unjust demise. fundamentally flawed and unsound system henceforth should no longer be allowed to corrupt our US laws, break our families, or kill our innocent.