DPF files amicus letter in support of motion to halt death penalty prosecutions

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Death Penalty Focus has filed an amicus letter in support of a motion filed last month by death penalty lawyer and DPF board member Robert M. Sanger and Sarah Sanger in the California Supreme Court arguing that while the moratorium is in place in California, prosecutors should be prohibited from seeking the death penalty.

As we reported in the July Focus, Sanger argues that the moratorium Gov. Gavin Newsom announced in March created “a paradigm shift in the reality of California’s death penalty.” And the result is that, “A California jury in a capital case cannot be expected to provide a fair and reasoned penalty-phase determination free from speculation.”

The Court asked the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office to “address all issues raised in the petition for review,” asked Sanger to then respond to the DA’s review, and will issue its ruling by the end of this month.

In its letter, DPF maintains that, “The combined impact of the Governor’s executive action and the decision of prosecutors to nonetheless continue to seek death sentences will create impermissible confusion for jurors about what a death sentence means.”

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