Illinois State Conference NAACP Supported Bill To Repeal The Death Penalty Passes Il Senate 32-25,

The Illinois State House passed Senate Bill 3539 by a vote of 60 to 54, January 6, 2011, to not only repeal the state’s broken death penalty, but it would promote community safety by using the funds set aside for the Capital Litigation Trust Fund to provide assistance to victims’ families as well as training for law enforcement officials.

Research has long shown that the death penalty is a very expensive and ineffective measure for enforcing our most severe criminal justice laws. First, studies have time and again demonstrated that the death penalty is no better a crime deterrent than long prison sentences. In fact, states without the death penalty have lower crime rates. Furthermore, putting someone on death row costs a lot more than keeping them in prison for life. Statistics from across the country indicate that it costs anywhere from $1- $3 million per death penalty case, from the point of arrest to execution. A life sentence averages at roughly $500,000-$750,000. Thus, by keeping the death penalty on our books, Illinois is wasting precious resources that could be otherwise better used, especially at a time when we face one of our worse economic downturns.