The Bureau of Justice Statistics released the 2008 version of its annual report on the death penalty in the U.S. in December 2009. Information drawn from the report includes:

  • The number of people on death row declined from 3,215 in 2007 to 3,207 in 2008.
  • 50% of those on death row had not graduated from high school; only 9% had any college education.
  • 91% of those on death row had no prior homicide conviction.
  • 13.2% of those on death row at the end of 2008 were hispanic.
  • 22% of those on death row were married.
  • 1,122 of those on death row were under the age of 25 at the time of their arrest.
  • The average time between sentencing and execution for all those executed in 2008 was 11.75 years.

(See Bureau of Justice Statistics, Capital Punishment, 2008 - Statistical Tables, released Dec. 3, 2009). See also DPIC’s 2009 Year End Report and Sentencing.