Race of Death Row Inmates Executed Since 1976

National Statistics on the Death Penalty and Race

Death Row Populations by Race


National Statistics on the Death Penalty and Race


Execution information accurate as of September 1, 2015 following an execution in Texas.
Race of Defendants Executed in the U.S. Since 1976
BLACK 491 34.7%
LATINO 115 8.0%
WHITE 784 55.5%
OTHER 24 1.7%

NOTE: The federal government counts some categories, such as Hispanics, as an ethnic group rather than a race. DPIC refers to all groups as races because the sources for much of our information use these categories.

race chart 1

Race of Victims Since 1976
BLACK 318 15.2%
LATINO 142 6.8%
WHITE 1575 75.8%
OTHER 45 2.2%


NOTE: Number of Victims refers to the victims in the underlying murder in cases where an execution has occurred since the restoration of the death penalty in 1976. There are more victims than executions because some cases involve more than one victim.

Race of Victim Figures up to 10/1/2014 from NAACP-LDF "Death Row USA (October 1, 2014)" in addition to DPIC data.

 

 race chart 2

"In 82% of the studies [reviewed], race of the victim was found to influence the likelihood of being charged with capital murder or receiving the death penalty, i.e., those who murdered whites were found more likely to be sentenced to death than those who murdered blacks."
- United States General Accounting Office, Death Penalty Sentencing, February 1990
Persons Executed for Interracial Murders in the U.S. Since 1976

The cases represented here are cases of one defendant executed for the murder of one or more victims of one race. Cases involving multiple victims of several different races are not included here.

  White Defendant / Black Victim (31)



  Black Defendant / White Victim (295)

 

Executions for Interracial Murders

Current U.S. Death Row Population by Race
BLACK 1,250 41.67%
LATINO 386 12.86%
WHITE 1,284 42.77%
OTHER 81 2.69%

Death Row Population Figures from NAACP-LDF "Death Row USA (April 1, 2015)"
race chart 3

 


Current Death Row Populations by Race
as of April 1, 2015


State Total Black White Latino Native Amer. Asian
Alabama 198 106 91 3 0 1
Arizona 124 16 75 28 3 2
Arkansas 35 20 15 0 0 0
California 746 270 254 183 12 27
Colorado 3 3 0 0 0 0
Connecticut 12 6 5 1 0 0
Delaware 17 10 4 3 0 0
Florida 401 154 213 31 1 2
Georgia 85 41 41 3 0 0
Idaho 11 0 11 0 0 0
Indiana 14 3 11 0 0 0
Kansas 9 3 6 0 0 0
Kentucky 34 6 28 0 0 0
Louisiana 85 56 25 3 0 1
Mississippi 48 25 22 0 0 1
Missouri 33 13 20 0 0 0
Montana 2 0 2 0 0 0
Nebraska 11 2 4 5 0 0
Nevada 78 29 39 8 0 2
New Hampshire 1 1 0 0 0 0
New Mexico 2 0 2 0 0 0
North Carolina 157 79 64 5 8 1
Ohio 145 77 63 3 0 2
Oklahoma 48 21 22 2 3 0
Oregon* 36 3 28 3 1 0
Pennsylvania 184 100 65 17 0 2
South Carolina 44 23 20 1 0 0
South Dakota 3 0 3 0 0 0
Tennessee 73 33 36 1 1 2
Texas 271 113 76 77 0 5
Utah 9 1 5 2 1 0
Virginia 8 3 4 1 0 0
Washington 9 4 5 0 0 0
Wyoming 1 0 1 0 0 0
US Gov't 61 28 24 7 1 1
US Military 6 3 3 0 0 0

* One member of Death Row's race is not currently identified

(In this table, the total of inmates on death row will be slightly higher than the national total of 3,035 because some inmates were sentenced to death in more than one state and hence will be counted twice.)

Figures from NAACP-LDF "Death Row USA (January 1, 2015)"