Study: Despite declines, Florida uses death penalty more than many states
Although Florida saw a drop in 2015 in both the number of death-row inmates executed and the number of criminals sentenced to death, findings from a national nonprofit research organization show the Sunshine State continues to be an “outlier” in its administration of capital punishment.
The year-end report from the Death Penalty Information Center, released Wednesday, highlights Florida and a handful of other states for bucking national trends that reflect growing disfavor among Americans toward the death penalty.
Nationwide in 2015, executions dropped to their lowest level in 24 years, and the number of new death sentences imposed fell sharply from already historic lows, the center found.
Eighteen states and the District of Columbia have outlawed the death penalty, while another 12 haven’t executed anyone in nine years or longer, the center said.
“We’re seeing that the death penalty as a whole is being imposed much less frequently, and when it’s being imposed, it’s being imposed by an increasingly isolated group of states and counties,” said Robert Dunham, the center’s executive director. “When we talk about the death penalty being a product of outlier practices or geographically isolated, Florida is a perfect example.”