Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the standoff at Standing Rock or news about the movements fighting for peace, racial and economic justice, immigrant rights and LGBTQ equality. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How is this possible? Only with your support. If every visitor to this site in December gave just $10 we could cover our basic operating costs for 2017. Pretty exciting, right? So, if you've been waiting to make your contribution to Democracy Now!, today is your day. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else in 2017.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

Thousands of Politicians and Others Sign Call for Moratorium of Executions

StoryNovember 17, 1999
Watch iconWatch Full Show

Texas prison guards wrestled a man to the death chamber yesterday, after he refused to walk there on his own. Twenty-eight year old Desmond Jennings was overpowered by a five-man team and dragged to the chamber, where he was strapped to a gurney and killed by lethal injection. He became the 29th person executed in Texas this year and the 193rd since the state resumed executions in 1982.

Meanwhile, an investigation by the Chicago Tribune published this past Sunday revealed that capital punishment in Illinois is "a system so riddled with faulty evidence, unscrupulous trial tactics and legal incompetence that justice has been forsaken."

Illinois has released seven people from death row in the past few years after evidence brought up after trial cast doubt on their guilt, including Anthony Porter, who came to within 48 hours of execution. Two prosecutors and two sheriffs’ deputies were tried last year for railroading a man and sending him to death row with fabricated evidence. Although the man, Rolando Cruz, was released after spending over a decade on death row, they were still acquitted of the charges.

The newspaper’s findings come as thousands of supporters and opponents to the death penalty called for a moratorium on executions in full-page ads in the New York Times. Illinois Rep. Jesse Jackson (D-Ill) collected the signatures, which include 19 members of Congress, several former prosecutors, 100 murder victims’ family members, a former Mississippi prison warden and the former president of the American Bar Association.

Those calling for the moratorium point out that capital punishment is applied almost exclusively to the poor, and to evidence from the US General Accounting Office showing racial disparities in sentencing and imposition of the death penalty.

Guests:

  • Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr (D-Ill), who has led a campaign for a moratorium on executions in the United States.
  • Jack Curtin, former President of the American Bar Association, which called for a moratorium on executions in 1997.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.

Make a donation