Washington Supreme Court tosses out state’s death penalty

The execution chamber at the Washington State Penitentiary is shown in 2008. The state Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the death penalty violates its Constitution

Washington has become has become the 20th U.S. state to ban the death penalty, after its Supreme Court ruled the punishment was applied in an "arbitrary and racially biased manner".

Washington has had a moratorium on executions since 2014, but the ruling makes it the 20th state to do away with capital punishment by legislative act or court decree.

The justices ordered that people now on death row have their sentences converted to life in prison.

The news is welcome, but not particularly surprising.

Following the decision, Governor Jay Inslee tweeted he had "long been convinced that the death penalty in the state of Washington does not pass" the test of equal justice.

Following the supreme court ruling, Inslee released a statement calling the ruling a "hugely important moment" in the pursuit of "equal and fair application of justice".

Former Washington State Attorney General Rob McKenna said that a key understanding from the Supreme Court's ruling is that the death penalty was unconstitutional because of how it was applied in the state. It joins Alaska, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wisconsin, as well as the District of Columbia, in banning the practice.

The state's highest court issued the ruling while handling the case of Allen Eugene Gregory, sentenced to death for the rape and murder of a woman in 1996.

"Racial bias, conscious or unconscious, plays a role in the death penalty decisions across America, influencing who faces this ultimate punishment, who sits on the jury, what kind of victim impact and mitigation evidence is used, and who is given life or death", he said.

Senate Reaches Deal On 15 Judges
Seventeen of the races on the ballot are for open seats with no incumbent: 14 in the House and three in the Senate. Ted Cruz in Texas over Democrat Beto O'Rourke and how Republicans keep enthusiasm up through election day.

Hubble Space Telescope in ‘Safe Mode’ After Technical Disturbances
Six new gyroscopes were installed during the servicing mission-4 in Hubble made with the additional gyroscope in 2009. Even so, The Hubble Space Telescope is able to go back to work since it can work with only 2 gyroscopes.

Facebook announces Portal, Portal
The Portal + has a 15.6-inch display with a resolution of 1920×1080 pixels that can be oriented vertically or horizontally. In SmartCamera mode, the machines automatically reframe the image to take account of additional people entering the room.

Cal Coburn Brown was the last person executed in this state, in 2010.

"The death penalty, as administered by our state, fails to serve any legitimate penological goal", the majority opinion written by Chief Justice Mary Fairhurst states. Its eight prisoners on death row are now serving life sentences.

Citing a 2014 report by researchers at the University of Washington, Gregory's attorneys argue that black defendants in Washington are "more than four times as likely to be sentenced to death as other defendants".

Of the 30 states in which capital punishment is still legal, there have been no executions in 16 of them since 1976.

Inslee said he would sign a bill that abolished the death penalty if the Legislature sent him one, and veto any attempt by lawmakers to reinstate it.

Earlier this year, the state Senate passed a measure abolishing the death penalty, but the House didn't pass it.

Capital punishment has been on the decline in the United States for several years, but the Administration of Republican President Donald Trump has said it is considering expanding its use for some federal crimes.

"This is terrible", Kathleen O'Bert said after the ruling. "The court recognized that Washington state's death penalty is broken".

The justices said they would not reconsider Gregory's arguments on his guilt, stating that his conviction has already been appealed and affirmed by the court.

Related News:

  • Maduro assassination plot suspect dies in mysterious fall from window

    Maduro assassination plot suspect dies in mysterious fall from window

    Corker was in Caracas on Monday to meet with government officials and the opposition to assess Venezuela's economic crisis. Alban's lawyer, Joel Garcia, told reporters that when he last saw Alban on Sunday "he was not beaten, he was fine".
    Australia seeks to settle migrants outside major cities

    Australia seeks to settle migrants outside major cities

    A Shorten government would set up a new independent body, he said, to investigate which industries had true labour shortages. Australia's central bank governor said in August an influx of new residents had helped to underpin strong economic growth.
    Not The SG Ball, Virat Kohli Prefers The Dukes For Test Matches

    Not The SG Ball, Virat Kohli Prefers The Dukes For Test Matches

    In Pant, India have a chance to not only trial a new wicketkeeper in ODIs but also an explosive batsman in the middle order. Thanks to his brilliant performances in Tests, Ravindra Jadeja is all set to make a comeback in the ODI squad.
  • Robbie Williams' daughter confirmed as Princess Eugenie's bridesmaid

    Robbie Williams' daughter confirmed as Princess Eugenie's bridesmaid

    The impact of the meeting was so great on Eugenie she phoned her mother, Sarah Ferguson , to tell her of momentous occasion. The palace has been releasing the final details ahead of the big day, with Eugenie's bridal party confirmed.
    Selena Gomez has been hospitalised after reportedly suffering an 'emotional breakdown'

    Selena Gomez has been hospitalised after reportedly suffering an 'emotional breakdown'

    Selena is allegedly receiving Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT ), a therapy she has used in the past. Selena Gomez is "recovering" after seeking treatment following an emotional breakdown .
    Razer has unveiled its new US$799 Razer Phone 2

    Razer has unveiled its new US$799 Razer Phone 2

    Just a few days ago, Google unveiled the Pixel 3 phones , practically confirming every rumor that we heard in the past few months. One of the most identifiable features about the Razer Phone 2 is its illuminated logo that sits on the back of the product.
  • Cyclone Titli threatens to bring back Hudhud’s wrath

    Cyclone Titli threatens to bring back Hudhud’s wrath

    Thereafter, it is very likely to re-curve north eastwards, move towards Gangetic West Bengal across Odisha and weaken gradually. Odisha's Special Relief Commissioner Bishnupada Sethi said so far there had been no reports of casualties in the state.
    Harvey Weinstein: Part of sexual assault case against Hollywood producer dropped

    Harvey Weinstein: Part of sexual assault case against Hollywood producer dropped

    The letter said the detective told the witness she had no reason to cooperate with prosecutors and "less is more". His lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, said in court that he believes Ms Evans lied to the grand jury about what happened.

    Astronauts make emergency landing after Russian rocket fails after launch

    The Soyuz rocket and its Soyuz MS-10 space capsule lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at about 4:47 a.m. Glitches found in Russia's Proton and Soyuz rockets in 2016 were traced to manufacturing flaws at the plant in Voronezh.
  • Instagram's new AI tool detects bullying in photos and captions

    Instagram's new AI tool detects bullying in photos and captions

    This is being done to promote Live as a safe and fun place where one can share moments with their friends in real time. Instagram has also announced that it will be introducing a camera effect to spread kindness via Instagram Stories .
    Eagles Get Rocked At Home By The Vikings, 23-21

    Eagles Get Rocked At Home By The Vikings, 23-21

    The struggles continued to start this season. "I think after the performance last week, they wanted to get back to doing things". But if you've watched Vikings games this season, you know Cousins is part of the solution, not the problem.
    Google exposed data for hundreds of thousands of users

    Google exposed data for hundreds of thousands of users

    Ben Smith, Google's VP of Engineering, disclosed more information about the security issue, and how it was discovered. There was another factor at play, though, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal .


Most liked

Huawei launches machine learning capable new Ascend-series AI chips
Huawei also unveiled Ascend 310, a chipset for computing on smart devices, which is available right away. Xu also announced Huawei's full-stack portfolio of AI products and cloud services.

Tigers not renewing broadcasters' contract after fight
The issues started before a late-season game and continued afterward, with Allen allegedly pursuing and choking Impemba. Fox Sports Detroit and the Tigers have not commented on the departure of Impemba and Allen.

International Monetary Fund chief, Pakistan FM meet as Islamabad seeks bailout
USA stimulus also adds to the "already-unsustainable" debt and deficit that will undercut future growth, the report warned. Growth is projected to slow to 6.6 percent this year and 6.2 percent in 2019, a downgrade of 0.2 percentage points.

Images trickle out of Michael's vast devastation
Michael is the third strongest hurricane to ever hit the U.S. mainland and the strongest to impact the Florida Panhandle. The US Army said more than 2,000 Florida National Guard soldiers were working on the recovery operations.

Interpol's former Chinese chief accused of bribery
Beijing said he was under investigation by the country's anti-corruption body for unspecified breaches of the law. On whether China informed Interpol, he said Meng himself submitted a letter for resignation to the Interpol.

After White House visit, Kanye West stops by Apple store in Georgetown
Rapper Kanye West had a few things to say when he stopped by the White House for a visit with President Donald Trump Thursday. West also used the opportunity to applaud Mr Trump's efforts with North Korea and said he liked the country.

Red Sox eliminate rival Yankees, advance to ALCS
Handed a big early lead, Nathan Eovaldi shut down his former team during New York's most lopsided defeat in 396 postseason games. His suit claims he had been passed over for assignments because of a feud with Joe Torre, who is MLB's chief baseball officer.

Kanye and his 'brother' Donald discuss mental health and 'male energy'
West said many people believe that, if you're black, you have to be a Democrat and said he was pressured not to wear his red hat. Trump says he's "open-minded" about stop-and-frisk policing. "Day One, solved one of his biggest problems".

Brexit: No deal brings risk of stockpiling says watchdog
Barnier said he realised such checks were politically hard but this was the effect of Britons voting to leave the EU. It also warned about the risk of grounding of British aircraft not being able to fly, should no agreement be made.

Pogba should have kept views to himself - Saha
The Daily Mail (h/t Daily Star ) claims that the only way Pogba might remain is if Zinedine Zidane replaces Mourinho at Old Trafford.

10 year-old Monmouth boy campaigns for young people's mental health
This year's event will be crowned with a public lecture on mental health at the Ebenezer Presbyterian Church Hall at Osu in Accra. Mental health is said to be the most valuable thing that we pose with us.

Xiaomi Mi Box S bringing Android TV to United States buyers for $60
Interestingly, the remote control accompanying the Mi Box S is where most of the obvious design changes can be found. At a Google event on Tuesday, Xiaomi announced that it would soon begin selling Mi Box S in the United States.

Trump says Fed is 'out of control'
Although the drop was unusually large, the stock market has been on a historic run of gain since the president's inauguration. The central bank expects to raise the federal funds rate one more time in 2018 and three times in 2019.

Microsoft to Shield Linux Developers From Patent Battles
Microsoft says that it understands that companies and developers don't want just a "binary choice between Windows vs Linux, or. This is a surprise to many in the developer community as Microsoft has been notoriously protective of its patents.

Putin Congratulates Nurmagomedov After McGregor Win, Issues Veiled Warning
Nurmagomedov jumped out of the cage before leaping feet first at McGregor's team mate and cornerman Dillon Danis . McGregor caught wind of the argument and flew from Ireland to NY to confront Nurmagomedov at a pre-fight event.