Friday, June 21, 2002

Death Penalty Statistics in U.S.

Some statistics on the death penalty in the United States:

Currently, 18 states plus the federal government forbid execution of mentally retarded people. They are Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee and Washington. New York has a ban except for murder by a prisoner.

Twelve states do not have the death penalty. They are Alaska, Maine, Minnesota, Vermont, Hawaii, Massachusetts, North Dakota, West Virginia, Iowa, Michigan, Rhode Island, Wisconsin. The District of Columbia also does not have the death penalty.

Thirty-two states and the federal government carried out 782 executions between the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976 and the end of 2001.

The top five states carrying out executions during that period were Texas, 256; Virginia, 83; Missouri, 53; Florida, 51, and Oklahoma, 48.

There are about 3,700 prisoners on death row in the United States.

About 45 percent of death row inmates are white, 43 percent are black, 9 percent are Hispanic and about 3 percent are listed as "other." _

About 81 percent of death row inmates' victims were white, 14 percent were black, 4 percent were Hispanic.

In 2000, the latest year statistics are available, the youngest death row inmate was 18; the oldest was 85.

Fifty-four women were serving death sentences in 2000, up from 35 in 1990.