Skip to comments.U.S. judge rules California death penalty system unconstitutional
Posted on 07/16/2014 3:44:34 PM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer
California's system for imposing and carrying out the death penalty is so long and drawn-out that it amounts to cruel and unusual punishment and so is unconstitutional, a federal judge ruled on Wednesday.
Ruling in the case of Ernest Dewayne Jones, who was condemned to death in 1995 and has yet to be executed, Judge Cormac J. Carney of the U.S. District Court for the Central California said that to take "nearly a generation" to decide on Jones' appeals was unconstitutional.
As part of the ruling, Carney vacated the death penalty sentence in Jones' case.
"The dysfunctional administration of California's death penalty system has resulted, and will continue to result, in an inordinate and unpredictable period of delay," Carney wrote in his opinion, filed on Wednesday.
"Allowing this system to continue to threaten Mr. Jones with the slight possibility of death, almost a generation after he was first sentenced, violates the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment."
(Excerpt) Read more at reuters.com ...
There is a lot of unconstitutional all of a sudden
Carney, Cormac J.
Born 1959 in Detroit, MI
Federal Judicial Service:
Judge, U.S. District Court, Central District of California
Nominated by George W. Bush on January 7, 2003, to a seat vacated by Carlos R. Moreno. Confirmed by the Senate on April 7, 2003, and received commission on April 9, 2003.
University of California, Los Angeles, B.A., 1983
Harvard Law School, J.D., 1987
Private practice, California, 1987-2001
Judge, Superior Court of California, County of Orange, 2001-2003
The Constitution is unconstitutional.
So, the black-robed oligarchs tie up executions for years, and even decades, and then decide that such a long process is cruel and unusual.
Personally, I think letting people like this sit on the bench is cruel and unusual punishment on We the People.
Insanity masquerading as judicial opinion! Because the appeals process has been delayed by defendants’ lawyers to save the life of those convicted and sentenced to die, making them wait that long to be executed is cruel!
I was just going to say this was another Bush appointee.
Ya beat me to it.
I suspect this is leftists opening up a new front against the US. The death penalty has always been the “twin brother” of gun liberty, and leftists do not want America to have either.
The very best way to streamline the death penalty may soon come our way, with conservatives as chairmen of the Senate and House Judiciary Committees. Among things they can do:
1) Declare states to be “competent authorities” to carry out the death penalty as they see fit, without repeated intrusion into their means by death penalty opposed federal judges.
2) Move all death penalty appeals to the head of the federal court docket, so there are no longer years of delay just to hear an appeal.
3) Limit continuances during the appeal process to 1 month each for the defense, the prosecution, and at the discretion of the judge. Total 3 months.
4) Restrict when and how federal judges can overturn a death penalty, with a judicial bias to return the case to the trial court to reconsider, not with instructions to acquit.
5) Suggest to the individual states that there is much they can do as well to streamline the process, like changing the law so that a government can only commute or pardon on the recommendation of the state board of pardons and paroles. And to allow the firing squad as an alternative means of execution, as it is much harder to appeal.
He was appointed to the superior court by Grey Davis. Bush apparently thought he deserved a higher position.
He did real good, so Bush promoted him...
I guess Bush thought the same of Roberts, the result is we now have Obamacare.
Another corrupt judge writing law based on his personal political opinion. Oh how the USA needs to demote them to outhouse duty.
The black robed educated idiots created the delays to begin with. Lock up all the judges and lawyers with all the killers and murderers in a dark sealed concrete room and leave knives, bats, and all manner of sharp and lethal hand instruments in the room and let the best man survive. Than wash rinse and repeat with the next group until none are left. Or just take them out back and hang them all now.
How can it be unconstitutional? It has nothing to do with the Constitution. Just shoot the murderer and be done with it.
I know Jerry Brown has been releasing 10’s of thousands of criminals so he must be happy with this ruling.
Actually, in a perverse way, he’s right. We should have a process that limits appeals of death penalty sentences. Here in California more condemned people die in our prisons of old age that by carrying out the sentences that the original court handed down. There needs to be an expedited process lasting no more than a year where ALL appealable issues are brought up and adjudicated, and either the sentence vacated or carried out.
The liberal courts threw out the DP previously.
The legislature re-wrote the law and by a majority put it back in place.
The liberal courts turn it into a delay game.
Another judge says that since in practice it is a delay game, it is not capable of being applied in an even and sensible manner.
The mistake happens when instead of ruling the appeals and delay processes in the courts have to change — his branch — he throws out a law the legislature passed.
A sensible legislature would re-craft the law yet again and limit the judicial review process. But, it topsy turvy land where the electorates representative can’t write law of the land, the courts would claim they can’t be limited.
The public just sits back and says wasn’t Jeter’s final appearance just great and what about those crazy Khardasian girls?
I’ve sent this to three governors of Cal.
We have over 300 on death row. They even built a new death row to handle the number. The cost is at least 30 million for housing alone. So I estimate appeals and everything at $40 million.
We have 20 or less sentences a year. Here’s a plan to get rid of the backlog and return it to a sensible system. The goal is to handle up the 25 executions a year after the back log is cut down.
Set up 3 panels of 3 judges each. Within a year of being convicted, your appeal is heard by one of these panels. The appeal from those panels is within one year of conviction (no more than 90 days after hearing). The appeal is to the US circuit and then the US supreme court. No more appeals at the state level unless new evidence or corruption of the trial process.
Total time no more than 5 years.
After 5 years, schedule 1 execution per week until the back log is taken care of.
Th cost of 9 judges, clerks, defense attorneys, prosecutors, should be well under 0 million a year, an annual savings of $30 million after the fourth year.
under 10 million per year
I agree with your comments. It’s very frustrating realizing justice is so seldom served for the victim’s families. They never get closure, but that isn’t cruel or unusual at all. /s
“The anticipation of death is worse than death itself - Mason Storm/Hard To Kill
Looks like the judge has watched too many movies.
ooops......That probably means that Scott Peterson will rest easy....I don’t need to see the judges mail...
I spent a lot of time on death row. There are guys who have been there a lot longer than Jones. While I would like to see more of these guys executed, life on death row (is that an oxymoron?) is pure misery, so maybe there is a little justice in the world.
One of my favorite comedians. Thanks!