New Mexico Repeals Death Penalty

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson signed a bill on Wednesday that repeals the state's death penalty and caps the maximum punishment to life in prison without parole.

Although a supporter of the death penalty in certain instances, Richardson said he felt the justice system had been incorrect too many times as of late -- including four men in New Mexico who were exonerated while on death row -- to continue the controversial practice.

"Regardless of my personal opinion about the death penalty, I do not have confidence in the criminal justice system as it currently operates to be the final arbiter when it comes to who lives and who dies for their crime," Richardson said in a statement Wednesday.

With the decision, New Mexico becomes the 15th state to bar the death penalty as a form of punsihment. Four other states are also considering changes.

Read the Opposing Views debate, Should the Death Penalty be Abolished?



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