As you know, we have been monitoring proposed legislation that would expand Florida’s death penalty and make it the easiest state in the country to get a death sentence. The legislation would require just 8 votes in favor of death, and would allow a judge to override a jury’s recommendation for a life sentence and impose death instead. Thank you to those who have already taken these actions to express your opposition.
On Monday, March 6th at 3:30 p.m., the Florida Senate Criminal Justice Committee will hear SB 450, Jury Recommendations in Death Penalty Cases. Members of FADP are filing formal comments against the bill and will present live testimony at Monday’s hearing. You can watch it here.
It is not lost on me that SB 450 will be heard immediately after a bill that would provide compensation to people who have been wrongfully incarcerated. Florida is responsible for the highest number of death row exonerations, 30 since 1973. Nearly ALL of those exonerations involved non-unanimous jury recommendations for death, or cases where the judge overrode the jury’s life decision. The committee needs to hear that while they have a responsibility to compensate the wrongfully convicted, they have an equal responsibility not to pass legislation that will undoubtedly lead to more wrongful convictions.
How can you help? Contact the committee members NOW and urge them to vote NO on this bill.
Please, join us. Take and share this action. Let your voice be heard before Monday afternoon. We will not stay silent.
FADP Executive Director