Execution Drop Makes Some Think Death Penalty Is Fading Away

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WASHINGTON (AP) – Is the death penalty in America gradually dying?

There have been just two executions since May 1. And the total for 2016 probably will hit a 25-year low.

Execution drug shortages, errors in death chambers and legal challenges to sentences imposed by judges have contributed to a dramatic decline in the number of states that are carrying out executions.

Just three states — Texas, Georgia and Missouri — are using the death penalty with any regularity, though Texas has not executed anyone since April. Four executions are scheduled in the state before the end of the year.

The reduction in executions and in the number of states that are enforcing death sentences led Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to conclude recently, “I think the death penalty is fading away.”

(© Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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