NEW RESOURCES: Capital Punishment and the State of Criminal Justice 2015

The American Bar Association has released a new publication, The State of Criminal Justice 2015, examining major issues, trends, and significant changes in America's criminal justice system. The chapter devoted to capital punishment was written by Ronald Tabak, an attorney at Skadden Arps and board member of the Death Penalty Information Center. Tabak presents evidence of the declining use of the death penalty in death sentences and executions, particularly noting the growing geographic isolation of the death penalty. He includes recent developments, such as the moratorium on executions in Pennsylvania and ongoing controversy and secrecy surrounding methods of execution. He also highlights numerous studies and cases regarding innocence and racial bias. He concludes, "[I]t is vital that the legal profession and the public be better informed about what is really going on in the capital punishment system.... Ultimately, our society must decide whether to continue with a system that cannot survive any serious cost/benefit analysis."

(R. Tabak, "Capital Punishment," American Bar Association, in The State of Criminal Justice 2015; DPIC posted August 5, 2015). See Studies.