Skip to content
Guest Thinkers

DNA Days

The number of executions in the U.S. has dropped for the seventh straight year while more defendants are exonerated by DNA evidence.

“The number of death sentences imposed by US courts has fallen because of a growing number of exonerations through DNA testing, according to a report by a prominent anti-death penalty group. The Death Penalty Information Centre in Washington says judges and juries imposed fewer death sentences over the past 12 months than at any time since the restoration of execution in 1976. This year 106 death sentences have been passed, the seventh straight year the number has fallen and sharply down on the high of 328 in 1994. Richard Dieter, DPIC’s director and author of the report, said the fall reflected growing concern over the reliability of convictions. ‘The principal reason is the innocence cases, the exonerations, people getting out because of DNA testing.’ DPIC said nine condemned men were exonerated in 2009, the second highest number of exonerations since the death penalty was reinstated.”


Up Next