Voters to decide Nov. 6 if state's death penalty to continue

Initiative would replace execution with life in prison with no chance of parole

After nearly 35 controversial years of capital punishment, Californians will once again put the death penalty on trial.

After supporters gathered more than 504,000 signatures, the Savings, Accountability and Full Enforcement for California Act will be on the November ballot in California, state Secretary of State Debra Bowen announced yesterday.

If it passes, the SAFE California Act will replace California's death penalty with life in prison with no chance of parole. According to the SAFE California campaign, "convicted killers will remain in high security prisons until they die--with no risk of executing an innocent person."

Additionally, the 725 prisoners currently on death row in the state would have their sentences converted to life. Prisoners convicted of murder would be required under the law to work and pay restitution into a victim's compensation fund—that money would be put toward investigating unsolved rape and murder cases.

SAFE California also requires persons convicted of murder to work and pay restitution into a victim's compensation fund and creates the SAFE California Fund, which takes $30 million a year for three years in budget savings and puts it into the investigation of unsolved rape and murder cases.

California has executed 13 inmates since reinstituting the death penalty in 1978; the state has put to death no one since 2006 when a federal judge suspended executions, ruling that the state's lethal injection protocol constituted cruel and unusual punishment.

Jeanne Woodford, former warden at San Quentin state prison and an outspoken proponent of the proposition, says the "system is broken, expensive and it always will carry the grave risk of a mistake."

"In November, voters will have the first opportunity ever to decide between the death penalty and a sentence of life in prison with absolutely no chance of parole," says Woodford. "Back in 1978, we did not have an alternative sentence that would keep convicted killers behind bars forever."

The state has spent $4 billion on the 13 executions, says Woodford, "at a time when we're laying off teachers and cutting vital services."


Like this comment
Posted by Charlie Brown
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Apr 25, 2012 at 10:03 am

The result of the vote won't really matter because either the Legislature, the Governor or the Courts will change the outcome if they don't like it just as they have done with other propositions.

Like this comment
Posted by Mr. Geeneyuss
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 25, 2012 at 10:07 am

Once again, the hand wringing, criminal loving and embracing liberal mindset simply cannot see the forest through the tree's.

"The state has spent $4 billion on the 13 executions, says Woodford, at a time when we're laying off teachers and cutting vital services."

The STATE has been FORCED to spend your $4 billion you... ______________(insert preferred conservative vs. liberal derogatory comment) because of the never ending series of appeals, roadblocks, and red tape thrown into the process of executing the convicted murderers, child rapists, serial killers and sociopaths. This is after ALL of the proceedings of the initial police investigations, arrest, arraignments, charges filed and case built, trial dates, legal pleadings and re-trials, appeal after appeal after appeal and every possible character witness has testified to the fact that "Johnny was just a good boy" the liberal mindset still refuses to accept that some people just need to have their Humanity Card revoked and sent to the court of a higher (or lower) order for their final judgement.

So, no. Don't abolish the death penalty, abolish the appeals process and create a 30 day window from conviction to execution, put a turnstile into death row and create a TRUE incentive to criminals that the state of California doesn't tolerate your behaviour.

Money saved, death row emptied in 2 months, lawyers/liberals pissed off, California a safer place to live, wow! A win, win, win, win situation if you ask me!

(crunchy munchy, do good/feel good, kumbaya singing comments to follow)

other all around good natured, "wrongly accused", guilty by simple association, skin/hair/gang color, or

Like this comment
Posted by sstever
a resident of Parkside
on Apr 25, 2012 at 10:47 am

I don't care whether the execution takes 30 days or 30 minutes. I don't carewhether the guy is guilty or innocent. As long as it lowers my taxes I'm fine with it. (Liberal montra to follow.)

Like this comment
Posted by Mr. Geeneyuss
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 25, 2012 at 11:16 am

Mr. Geeeneyus does not paste from word very well. Please disregard, "all other good natured...etc" last sentence. Shouldn't have made the Cntrl+C window.

Peace out P-Town!

Like this comment
Posted by Eric the Reaper
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 25, 2012 at 12:06 pm

It costs about a million bucks a year to keep someone on death row. Best solution to that is to execute one per hour, 10 hours be day. That way, they would have death row cleared out in about 2 months!

The lefty loonatics want to have a bunch more people in jail for life, costing taxpayers billions. Solution, get rid of lefty loonatics in office.

It's amazing how someone that is able to think can come up with clear, concise solutions! Now, do you want me to solve California's budget issues as well?

Like this comment
Posted by AnnaS
a resident of Foothill High School
on Apr 26, 2012 at 9:41 am

With the current situation, one must be a convinced murderer to get a right for peaceful painless death after years of comfortable living with no financial problems. I wonder how many people with untreatable fatal diseases wish to end their life the way murders do, but cannot do it because our "humane" society doesn't allow it. No matter what the vote will be, with the system which protects rights of criminals more than rights of victims, victims and/or their families will pay for "giving a second chance" to criminals.

Like this comment
Posted by Dave
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 27, 2012 at 1:49 pm

"Mr. Geeeneyus does not paste from word very well. "

Nor read the complete discussion of an issue, either.

One overall point of this issue is, it costs LESS to enforce a sentence of life imprisonment w/o parole.

Why doesn't "Mr. Geeeneyus" supply us with information on number of overturned convictions, please? Ooops, might cause you to actually read through something.

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