The Death Penalty Needs a Better Appeals Process

1414 WordsFeb 18, 20186 Pages
The Death Penalty Needs a Better Appeals Process Most often the death penalty is used in the United States to punish people that kill children, women or the elderly. The system has been in place for many years, and has evolved from the use of the electric chair and firing squads to the current method, the use of lethal injection. The most common reason innocent people are put to death is because of poor representation; in many cases, inmates get a court appointed lawyer and receive the ultimate sentence, the death penalty. Most court appointed lawyers have poor experience handling these types of cases. Additionally, they often do not believe their client’s innocence. Why should we believe a person’s innocence when the people that are supposed to be on their side don’t even believe them? While the death penalty is a good choice for the worst criminals in the system, the appeals process is so flawed that innocent people often face the ultimate punishment, the death penalty, for a crime they didn’t commit. On December 23, 1991, in Corsicana, Texas, Cameron Todd Willingham was awakened by his oldest daughter Amber telling him that their house was on fire. His wife Stacy, who had gone to The Salvation Army earlier that morning to get Christmas presents for the kids, was not home at the time. Willingham tried to help his children get out of the house but could not because of the intense heat, so he escaped from the home on his own. Some witnesses described him as “hysterical”

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