Repeal the death penalty and help victims -- Gazette.Net


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I was struck by the numerous arguments the editorial [“Repeal Maryland’s Death Penalty,” Dec. 5] made for repealing Maryland’s death penalty, and applaud the Gazette for recognizing the burden placed on victims’ family members by the state’s broken capital system. I urge Gov. Martin O’Malley to keep these victims’ family members in mind as he considers whether to support death penalty repeal.

The 2008 Maryland Commission on Capital Punishment, which recommended repealing the death penalty, heard testimony from family members of victims who testified that capital cases were more stressful than life-without-parole-cases.

If passed this year, the proposed death penalty repeal bill will appropriate money saved from ending the death penalty to aid survivors of homicide victims. It is unacceptable that such services are not currently available.

O’Malley has the opportunity to support death penalty repeal legislation this year. I urge him to listen to the family members of victims who are still suffering, and to support a bill that will help repair Maryland’s criminal justice system.

Andrea Hall, Rockville