While those who argue in support of capital punishment suggest that it helps keep police officers safer on the streets — the idea being that the death penalty is a deterrent here — research undertaken by the Death Penalty Information Center suggests otherwise.

After reviewing 31 years of FBI research on the murders of police officers across the country, and comparing the results between states with death penalty laws and those without capital punishment, the DPIC discovered the murder rate for police officers is HIGHER in most of the states WITH the death penalty.

From DPIC’s overview, Executive Director Robert Dunham explains:

“There’s no evidence that the death penalty deters murder and there’s no evidence that it protects the police.  Murder rates may be affected by many things, but the death penalty doesn’t appear to be one of them.” 

DPIC Study Details: Death Penalty and Protecting Police

For more, check out the powerpoint presentation given by DPIC’s Robert Dunham’s on this DPIC study, “Life After the Death Penalty: What Happens in States that Abolish the Death Penalty?,” which he presented at the Joint Meeting of the American Bar Association and New York City Bar Association, August 14, 2017.  For the underlying research supporting the DPIC’s findings, go here.

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