Bill Would Permit Repeated Death Trials in Federal Cases
Federal law makes a life sentence the default punishment when a federal jury can’t unanimously agree to impose the death penalty. The Justice Department wants to change that law, and it’s managed to sneak a change into the House version of the bill that would renew the Patriot Act.
So long as at least one juror voted for death, prosecutors could empanel a new sentencing jury and argue again that execution was warranted.
Former federal prosecutor Mary Jo White doesn’t think the government “should have two bites at that apple.”
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