The history of executions in America seems to be a string of one botched form to another. In a reaction to a botched execution in April and the supply of lethal drugs drying up, states like Tennessee have announced the return of the electric chair.
Dr. Deborah Denno, who teaches law that Fordham University in New York and is considered an expert on the topic of executions, said it was botched executions that led states to consider the electric chair in the early 1900s.
In US prisons 80,000 people are held in solitary confinement every year, spending more than 22 hours completely alone. It's expensive, its effectiveness is questionable and a growing body of work shows it exacerbates mental health issues. In addition to exacerbating mental health issues already present there is substantial research showing it causes mental health problems.
DNA testing that death row inmate Hank Skinner said would prove he is not a triple murderer is doing just the opposite. On Wednesday, the Texas Attorney General’s Office filed papers that say the DNA incriminates Skinner.
Skinner was convicted of killing his live-in girlfriend and her two adult children on New Year’s Eve in 1993.
But Skinner has insisted he’s innocent and the DNA would clear him of the crimes. The DNA was not tested during his murder trial and Skinner has been fighting in the courts to get access to the evidence for testing.