More than 70% of countries around the world have effectively abolished the death penalty, including all but one European nation. The United States, however, is an outlier, particularly among developed, democratic countries, and across the country, there are more than 2,000 people on death row.

Under the Biden administration, the federal government has had a standing moratorium on death sentences since July 1, 2021. This followed a period where executions at the federal level surged during the Trump administration.

State governments can form their own laws regarding capital punishment, and at the state level, death sentences and executions have become less common in recent years. Among the 27 states where the death penalty remains legal, its use is limited for those convicted of the most horrific crimes, such as a multiple homicide, murder of a police officer, or murder of a child.

According to Death Row U.S.A. Spring 2022, a report by the Legal Defense Fund, 27 people were on death row in Kentucky as of April 1, 2022 - the 16th most among states.

Death sentences are typically handed down by a jury, and due in part to a lengthy appeals process and a shortage of lethal injection drugs, prisoners often spend years or decades on death row before sentencing is carried out. From 1976, the year the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty after a short-lived prohibition, to April 1, 2022, a total of three state prisoners in Kentucky were executed.

 

RankStateDeath row inmates, April 1, 2022Executions from 1976 - April 1, 2022Total prisoners per 100,000 people, 2020
1California69013247
2Florida32399371
3Texas199573455
4Alabama16669398
5North Carolina13843271
6Ohio13456385
7Pennsylvania1283308
8Arizona11637495
9Nevada6512361
10Louisiana6228581
11Tennessee4713328
12Oklahoma42116559
13Georgia4176433
14Mississippi3722584
15South Carolina3743304
16Arkansas2931529
17Kentucky273414
18Oregon212300
19Missouri2091374
20Nebraska124269
21Kansas90298
22Idaho83398
23Indiana820351
24Utah77166
25Montana23362
26South Dakota15362
27New Hampshire10172

 

Originally published on 247wallst.com, part of the TownNews Content Exchange.