Public Safety Justifies the Cost of Capital Punnishment

446 Words2 Pages
Public Safety Justifies the Cost of Capital Punnishment "If there were a death penalty, more people would be alive." -Nancy Regan The question of the costs of capital punishment versus those of life imprisonment has been debated within the courts and legislatures since the 1960¡¥s when a massive appeals movement began to develop (Welch, 296). This appeals process was inspired by the fact that between 1930 and 1993, 4,085 people were executed in the United States and it is believed that of these 350 people were wrongfully executed which creates a staggering 08.6% wrongful execution rate (Welch, 314). Many people say that the death penalty will save the government and the taxpayers millions of dollars by eliminating the costs of caring for the inmates within correctional facilities. This, however, is an incorrect assumption. ¡§Costs vary from state to state and case to case, but generally, executions are three to four times more expensive than life imprisonment¡¨ (Welch, 296). This is because of the massive appeals process that a sentenced person must go through in order to be deemed justifiably worthy of the penalty for the crimes that they have committed. It is estimated that the trial and appeals of the Ted Bundy case in Florida coast a total of $6 to $10 million (Welch, 296). However, some count it worth the cost to completely eliminate the threat that the offender poses to the community and correctional facility staff as well as eliminating any incentive a criminal would have for attempting escape. Ted Bundy escaped from officials on two occasions, which resulted in the death, attacking, or rape of at least nine known young women (Rule, 526). To put an offender in prison for life in many ways only makes them more volatile (Welch, 296). Withholding execution, once you remove a person's freedom to live, you remove all methods of punishment allowed by the Constitution. If there were no penalty of death then the maximum penalty that you can hold over an individual serving a life sentence is to place them in solitary confinement or give them more life sentences. This leaves them free to do whatever they want and not really suffer any consequences, posing an unacceptable risk to the correctional officers and creating an open door to any ideas of escape by inmates. So in many cases people can justify capital punishment for those offenders who can not be reformed or punished enough for the crimes that they have committed.

    More about Public Safety Justifies the Cost of Capital Punnishment

      Open Document