Columbus – Today, Senator Edna Brown (D-Toledo) provided sponsor testimony on Senate Bill 94 in the Senate Judiciary Committee. SB 94 abolishes the death penalty and replaces it with life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.

“Mounting evidence indicates that innocent people have been sentenced to death,” said Senator Brown. “Too many people executed in the United States have been found to be innocent and exonerated. The probability of wrongfully killing someone is too great to ignore.”

In addition to the unacceptably high rate of false convictions in capital cases, death penalty cases are vastly more expensive compared to cases in which it is not sought. According to Ohioans to Stop Executions, capital punishment costs three times more than imposing life sentences. Much of the cost stems from extensive legal fees, continuous appeals and more expensive housing for death-row inmates who stay in higher-security facilities.

A 2014 report by the Dayton Daily News noted that Ohio spends approximately $17 million annually on the death penalty.

“Polls indicate that the majority of Americans support life in prison over death sentences,” said Senator Brown. “Continued use of capital punishment is enormously expensive while doing nothing to deter crime. Ohioans should not be held accountable for funding a practice that many agree is unfair and unnecessary.”

Ohio resumed executions in July after a three-year delay, which was due to a shortage of lethal-injection drugs.

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