The Death Penalty Information Center has released its annual report on the status of capital punishment in the U.S. at the end of 2005. The report notes a dramatic drop in death sentences to the lowest level in 30 years. The year showed an increasing reliance on the sentence of life-without-parole as an alternative to the death penalty.

New York’s legislature refused to restore the death penalty after its statute was declared unconstitutional, leaving life without parole as the punishment for murder.

Texas became the 37th out of 38 death penalty states to adopt life without parole as a sentencing alternative in capital cases.

In the Supreme Court, further restrictions were placed on thedeath penalty as juveniles were exempted and the Court found race bias in jury selection and ineffectiveness of counsel ignored by lower courts.

Read the report.
Read DPIC’s press release about the report.