Opinion
Grading City Hall: See our report card for L.A. City Council President Herb Wesson
Los Angeles Times

Death penalty repeal reduces murders? Numbers say otherwise

In his recent commentary ("Unrepresentative committee blocks Md. death penalty repeal vote," Jan. 2), Gerald Stansbury writes that ending the death penalty "would save Maryland millions of dollars and prevent future murders."

While I agree it would save the money, I disagree that it would reduce the number of murders. Using the website Maryland Citizens Against State Executions, their records show that since 1978, Baltimore County has executed four out of five inmates on death row.

Baltimore City executed only one person.

However, Baltimore City ended the year 2012 with just over 200 recorded murders and Baltimore County ended up with 24 murders.

To me, this proves that eliminating the death penalty will not reduce the murder rate in any way, shape or form.

Again, using information from MCASE, there are currently five inmates on death row. Only one of the is from Baltimore City. The others are from Baltimore County and Prince Georges County. Three were sentenced in 1984, one in 1996 and the other in 1998.

So another way to look at it, no one has been sentenced to death in almost 15 years. As 1998 was the last time someone was sentenced to death, how many murders have occurred since that day not only in the city but in the counties as well? And I am sure more people are murdered in Baltimore than all the counties combined.

Even when the murder cases are apparently premeditated, the death penalty is seldom applied.

Mike Jayroe, Edgewood

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
  • Don't lock up children forever

    Don't lock up children forever

    Sen. James Brochin and Baltimore County State's Attorney Scott Shellenberger recently asked whether Maryland would break its promises to victims' families by eliminating life-without-parole sentences for youth under 18. The answer: No ("Will Maryland go back on its word?" March 18).

  • Bring back the death penalty in Md.

    Bring back the death penalty in Md.

    Baltimore's very own "Public Enemy No. 1" has been sentenced to life plus 240 years for a double murder ("Killer gets life plus 240 years, flips off top prosecutor," March 24).

  • Baltimore County is still in the dark ages on the death penalty

    Baltimore County is still in the dark ages on the death penalty

    Some years ago I took a course during which the subject of racist juries in Baltimore County was discussed. I had believed that we had come a long way from those Neanderthal days until I read the op-ed by State's Attorney Scott Shellenberger and professor Richard Vatz in which they attempt to make...

  • Choose life and mercy — even for heinous crimes

    Choose life and mercy — even for heinous crimes

    While Baltimore County State's Attorney Scott Shellenberger and Towson University professor Richard Vatz have outlined many secular reasons for reinstating the death penalty ("Maryland should reinstate the death penalty," Jan. 6), I suggest that we let dead dogs lie and that we let the death penalty...

  • Shellenberger and Vatz make a weak case for the death penalty

    Shellenberger and Vatz make a weak case for the death penalty

    Baltimore County State's Attorney Scott Shellenberger and Towson University professor Richard Vatz present the oft-heard argument in favor of reinstating capital punishment in Maryland ("Maryland should reinstate the death penalty," Jan. 6). They do not, however, present a compelling argument because...

  • O'Malley overrode the public's will on the death penalty

    O'Malley overrode the public's will on the death penalty

    Good article regarding reinstating capital punishment in our state ("Maryland should reinstate the death penalty," Jan. 6). I agree that it was a big mistake ending it. I feel that the majority want to have the death penalty option, but Gov. Martin O'Malley has his own agenda, and the public be...

  • Killing each other won't make us safer

    Killing each other won't make us safer

    Reading Scott Shellenberger's and Richard E. Vatz's pleas for a reinstatement of the death penalty in Maryland reminds me of a proverbial ditty my mother was fond of during my childhood ("Maryland should reinstate the death penalty," Jan. 6).

  • The death penalty is dead; let's move on

    The death penalty is dead; let's move on

    Each one of the arguments raised in Scott Shellenberger and Richard E. Vatz's recent op-ed calling for reinstating the death penalty in Maryland was considered during the debate on capital punishment ("Maryland should reinstate the death penalty," Jan. 6).

Comments
Loading
78°