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Death row

Death row signifies the place, often a section of a prison, that houses individuals awaiting execution. The term is also used figuratively to describe the state of awaiting execution ("being on death row"), even in places where no special facility or separate unit for condemned inmates exists. After individuals are found guilty of an offense and sentenced to death, they remain on death row during appeal and habeas corpus procedures, and if those are unsuccessful, until execution. Due to the complex, expensive, and time-consuming appeals procedures mandated in some jurisdictions, e.g. the United States, before an execution can be carried out, prisoners may wait years before execution; the time between sentencing and execution has increased relatively steadily between 1977 and 2010, including a 22% jump between 1989 and 1990 and a similar jump between 2008 and 2009. In 2010, a death row inmate waited an average of 178 months (or close to 15 years) between sentencing and execution. [1] Nearly a quarter of deaths on death row in the U.S. are due to natural causes.[2]

Opponents of capital punishment claim that a prisoner's isolation and uncertainty over his or her fate constitute a form of mental cruelty and that especially long-time death row inmates are liable to become mentally ill, if they are not already. This is referred to as the death row phenomenon. In extreme cases some inmates may attempt suicide.

In the United Kingdom, the convicted were given one appeal of their sentence. If that appeal was found to involve an important point of law it was taken up to the House of Lords and at that point the sentence was changed to life in prison.[3] In some Caribbean countries which still authorize execution, the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council is the ultimate court of appeals. It has upheld appeals by prisoners who have spent several years under sentence of death, stating that it does not desire to see the death row phenomenon emerge in countries under its jurisdiction. Haiti continued the conventional 'reprieved if not executed within 90 days' process adopted by Britain before its abolition (Haiti later abolished the death penalty in 1987).[4]

United States Penitentiary, Terre Haute houses the male death row prisoners sentenced by the U.S. federal government San Quentin State Prison houses the male death row prisoners sentenced by the U.S. state of California Allan B. Polunsky Unit houses the male death row prisoners sentenced by the U.S. state of Texas Louisiana State Penitentiary, which houses the male death row prisoners sentenced by the State of Louisiana The Mississippi State Penitentiary, which houses male death row prisoners sentenced by the State of Mississippi Oklahoma State Penitentiary, which houses male death row prisoners sentenced by the state of Oklahoma There were approximately 3,189 people on death row in the United States as of Jan 1, 2012 ( Since 1977, the states of Texas (464), Virginia (108) and Oklahoma (94) have executed the most death row inmates. [5] As of 2010, California (683), Florida (390), Texas (330) and Pennsylvania (218) housed more than half of all inmates pending on death row. As of 2008, the longest-serving prisoner on death row in the U.S.A. who has been executed was Jack Alderman who served over 33 years. He was executed in 2008.[6] However, Alderman only holds the distinction of being the longest-serving executed inmate so far. A Florida inmate, Gary Alvord, arrived on Florida's death row before Alderman arrived on Georgia's death row and, on 9 April 2009, Alvord had been on death row for exactly 35 years,[7] longer than any other United States death row inmate. The oldest prisoner on death row in the United States was Leroy Nash, age 94, in Arizona. He died of natural causes on February 12, 2010.


Death row locations in the United States

Men's death row Women's death row
Civilian Federal United States Penitentiary, Terre Haute, Terre Haute, Indiana[8] Federal Medical Center, Carswell, Fort Worth, Texas[9][10][11]
Military United States Disciplinary Barracks, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas Naval Consolidated Brig, Miramar, San Diego, California1
State Men's death row Women's death row
Alabama Holman Correctional Facility[12] and William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility[13] Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women[14]
Arizona Arizona State Prison Complex - Eyman[15] Arizona State Prison Complex - Perryville[15]
Arkansas Varner Unit[16] McPherson Unit[17]
California San Quentin State Prison[18] Central California Women s Facility[18]
Colorado No designated death row
Currently all DR prisoners are at Sterling Correctional Facility[19]
Colorado State Penitentiary
Connecticut Northern Correctional Institution[20] York Correctional Institution[21]
Delaware James T. Vaughn Correctional Center[22] Delores J. Baylor Women's Correctional Institution[22]
Florida Union Correctional Institution and Florida State Prison[23] Lowell Correctional Institution Annex[23]
Georgia Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison[24] Metro State Prison[25]
Idaho Idaho Maximum Security Institution, Boise Pocatello Women's Correctional Center, Pocatello
Illinois Pontiac Correctional Center, Pontiac[26] Dwight Correctional Center[26]
Indiana Indiana State Prison, Michigan City Indiana Women's Prison, Indianapolis
Kansas El Dorado Correctional Facility, El Dorado Topeka Correctional Facility, Topeka
Kentucky Kentucky State Penitentiary, Eddyville[27] Kentucky Correctional Institute for Women, Peewee Valley[28]
Louisiana Louisiana State Penitentiary[29] Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women, St. Gabriel[30]
Maryland North Branch Correctional Institution[31] Maryland Correctional Institution - Women, Jessup
Mississippi Mississippi State Penitentiary[32] Central Mississippi Correctional Facility[32]
Missouri Potosi Correctional Center[33] Fulton
Montana Montana State Prison, Deer Lodge Montana Women's Prison, Billings
Nebraska Tecumseh State Correctional Institution, Tecumseh Nebraska Correctional Center for Women, York
Nevada Ely State Prison, Ely[34] Florence McClure Women's Correctional Center, North Las Vegas[35]
New Hampshire New Hampshire State Prison for Men, Concord New Hampshire State Prison for Women, Goffstown
New Mexico Penitentiary of New Mexico, Santa Fe County New Mexico Women's Correctional Facility, Grants
New York2 Clinton Correctional Facility, Dannemora[36] Bedford Hills Correctional Facility for Women, Bedford Hills[36]
North Carolina Central Prison, Raleigh[37] North Carolina Correctional Institution for Women, Raleigh[37]
Ohio Chillicothe Correctional Institution, Chillicothe,[38] s CCI death row receives final inmates]." Chillicothe Gazette. Retrieved on February 2, 2012. Ohio State Penitentiary, Youngstown[38] and Franklin Medical Center, Columbus[38] Ohio Reformatory for Women, Marysville[38]
Oklahoma Oklahoma State Penitentiary, McAlester Mabel Bassett Correctional Center, Oklahoma City
Oregon Oregon State Penitentiary, Salem[39] Coffee Creek Correctional Facility, Wilsonville
Pennsylvania SCI-Greene, Franklin Township
and Skippack Township (SCI Graterford)[40]
SCI-Muncy, Clinton Township[40]
South Carolina Lieber Correctional Institution, Ridgeville[41] Camille Griffin Graham Correctional Institution, Columbia[42]
South Dakota South Dakota State Penitentiary, Sioux Falls South Dakota Women's Prison, Pierre
Tennessee Riverbend Maximum Security Institution, Nashville[43] and Morgan County Correctional Complex, Wartburg[43] Tennessee Prison for Women, Nashville[43]
Texas Polunsky Unit, West Livingston[44][45] Mountain View Unit, Gatesville[45]
Utah Utah State Prison, Draper Central Utah Correctional Facility, Gunnison
Virginia Sussex I State Prison, Sussex County[46][47] Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women[48][49]
Washington Washington State Penitentiary, Walla Walla[50] Washington Corrections Center for Women[50]
Wyoming Wyoming State Penitentiary, Rawlins Wyoming Women's Center, Lusk

Notes: 1Naval Consolidated Brig, Miramar is the only facility in the United States Department of Defense designated to house female Level III inmates.
2Last death sentence reversed in 2007.

See also

  • Live from Death Row
  • The Green Mile
  • The Chamber
  • Dead Man Walking
  • Capital punishment
  • List of United States death row inmates
  • List of exonerated death row inmates
  • Execution chamber


External links

de:Todeszelle es:Corredor de la muerte fr:Couloir de la mort it:Braccio della morte hu:Siralomh z nl:Dodencel ja: pt:Corredor da morte simple:Death row zh:

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