Debate continues on whether Louisiana should abolish death penalty

Debate continues on whether Louisiana should abolish death penalty

LOUISIANA (KSLA)

A pair of bills in both the Louisiana Senate and the House would like to see the death penalty abolished, and at least one of them is gaining traction.
A senate committee voted Tuesday, 6 to 1, in favor of abolishing the death penalty in Louisiana, for any crimes committed after August 1. Lawmakers cited issues with the penalty in the past, believing it to be costly and ineffective at preventing future crimes.
According to the Death Penalty Information Center, there have been 28 executions in the state since the law was reinstated back in 1973, but 158 people who were given the death penalty eventually had their sentence reversed. 
Recently back on April 14, the death penalty sentence for Rodricus Crawford of Shreveport was reversed and a judge chose not to have a retrial for that decision. Crawford was convicted and sentenced to death in 2012 in the death of his one-year-old son, Roderius Lott.
Louisiana's last execution was back in 2010. and 76 people currently sit on death row.
James Windom is the executive director of The Capital Area Reentry Coalition, working to help inmates readjust to society when released from prison. He says while he wishes to help as many people as he can, he realizes some crimes are too great.

"There are some people who will commit crime and they will never ever get out of prison, and frankly they should not hit the streets. Our focus within the reentry community is to ensure that those who do come home have every tool necessary so that they can become a success," said Windom. "My personal beliefs are yes, I believe in the good of man and that everyone can be rehabilitated. That's my belief, but as an organization we're more prone to helping the 95% that will get out of jail at some point in their life, and the focus of that is that since they're coming home anyway, it behooves us to make every effort to provide them with the tools necessary that they can be a success when they hit the streets."

A similar bill to abolish the death penalty, known as HB 101, also exists in the house but was recently referred to a committee to be reviewed back on April 10.
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