Entries tagged with “Maria McLaughlin

Policy Issues

Sentencing Alternatives

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Nov 27, 2023

Florida Judge Imposes Life Sentence for Joshua McClellan, Overriding Non-Unanimous Jury Recommendation for Death

On November 20, Florida Circuit Judge Heidi Davis sen­tenced Joshua McClellan to life in prison after a non-unan­i­mous jury returned a rec­om­men­da­tion of death in September by a 10 – 2 vote. Judge Davis not­ed the mit­i­ga­tion evi­dence pre­sent­ed by Mr. McClellan’s defense, includ­ing men­tal health eval­u­a­tions and tes­ti­mo­ny regard­ing his trau­mat­ic upbring­ing, as an expla­na­tion for her deci­sion. Mr. McClellan was one of the first defen­dants to receive a non-unan­i­mous death rec­om­men­da­tion under a new law signed ear­li­er this year by Governor and pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Ron DeSantis, allow­ing death sen­tences when…

Policy Issues

Arbitrariness

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Mar 30, 2023

LAW REVIEWS— Who Lives and Who Dies Depends Heavily on a Thorough Investigation and Presentation of Mitigating Evidence in Death Penalty Cases

In a forth­com­ing update to their ground­break­ing 2018 research on the impor­tance of mit­i­ga­tion in death penal­ty cas­es, researchers Russell Stetler, Maria McLaughlin, and Dana Cook (pic­tured) have great­ly expand­ed the num­ber of cap­i­tal cas­es reviewed and drawn the con­clu­sion that the effec­tive inves­ti­ga­tion and pre­sen­ta­tion of mit­i­gat­ing evi­dence can fore­stall a death sen­tence no mat­ter how death-wor­thy the crime facts may appear at first glance.” Their study — titled Mitigation Works” — focused on high­ly aggra­vat­ed cap­i­tal cas­es that result­ed in life sen­tences, rather than death. The update expand­ed the num­ber of poten­tial death-penal­ty cas­es reviewed to about 600, while their prior…