FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Rachel Smith
May 19, 2016 949-241-9785
California Death Penalty Reform Proponents Submit Signatures to Qualify for November Ballot
SACRAMENTO, Calif., May 19, 2016 – The Californians for Death Penalty Reform and Savings campaign submitted 593,000 total signatures across the state’s 58 counties today to qualify the initiative for the November ballot.
California currently requires 365,880 valid signatures to qualify a statutory ballot measure.
Press conferences are being held today in ten major cities throughout the state with speeches from local District Attorneys, law enforcement officials, crime victim advocates, and community leaders.
The Death Penalty Reform and Savings Act seeks to reform California’s death penalty laws so they can be fairly and appropriately applied in the most heinous of crimes. The initiative will help keep Californians safe and ensure justice for murdered victims and their families. At the same time, the measure will save taxpayers millions of dollars per year while maintaining due process protections for those sentenced to death.
The initiative’s proponent, former NFL player Kermit Alexander, will speak this afternoon in Riverside today about his thirty year effort to seek justice for his mothers, sister and two nephews who were murdered in 1984.
“Justice is not easy, and it is certainly not gentle. But justice denied is not justice,” says Alexander.
“We the people of California have consecutively and systematically voted to reinstate and preserve the use of capital punishment despite the efforts of those who refuse to carry out an execution.”
Death row inmates have murdered over 1000 victims, including 226 children and 43 police officers; 294 victims were raped and/or tortured before being killed. California’s death row includes serial killers, cop killers, child killers, mass murderers, and hate crime killers.
The California Death Penalty Reform and Savings Act of 2016 was introduced on October 20, 2015 and will ensure justice for both victims and defendants by:
- Expanding the pool of available defense attorneys so death penalty appeals can proceed quickly.
- Requiring that a defendant who is sentenced to death is appointed a lawyer at the time of sentence, rather than waiting for years just to get a lawyer.
- Allowing the Department of Corrections to house condemned inmates in less costly housing with fewer special privileges while still maintaining strong security.
- Requiring that condemned inmates work and pay restitution to victims.
- Allowing the Department of Corrections to enact an execution protocol without having to reply to every question or suggestion by any citizen who sends them a letter.
- Giving the California Supreme Court oversight over the state agency that manages death penalty appeals.
Each County will transmit a raw count of signatures to the California Secretary of State and then proceed to verify either a full count of signatures in their county or a random sample.
More stories about victims and current death row inmates, please visit:
For more information on the press conferences and speakers, contact Rachel Smith.