Senate panel removes review from death-penalty statute

By: Ernie Suggs
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday voted to strip the so-called “proportionality review” from Georgia’s death-penalty statute.

The proportionality review, which legal experts have called a critical part of the state’s capital punishment law, is conducted by the Georgia Supreme Court. In its review, the court compares a death sentence to punishment in other cases to ensure a capital sentence is not excessive or disproportionate. The review is meant to ensure that capital cases are not imposed arbitrarily.

The move to strip the review from state law is part of House Bill 323, which now goes to the Senate floor for a vote.

– Bill Rankin