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Supreme Court / Death Penalty / Reaction #247007

CBS Evening News for Friday, Jul 02, 1976
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(Studio) Supreme Court says executions are not cruel and unusual punishment forbidden by Const.
REPORTER: Walter Cronkite

(DC) No one executed in United States since 1967. 1972 Supreme Court decision struck down existing laws with regard to death penalty. Justices Potter Stewart, Lewis Powell and John Paul Stevens gave key decisions. 4 conservative justices join in 7-2 ruling upholding death penalty laws of Georgia, Florida and Texas. Those laws provide standards for deciding who'll be executed. Justices, William Brennan and Thurgood Marshall say all executions are unconst. They and 3 swing judges vote 5-4 in striking death laws of North Carolina and LA. 167 in Georgia, Texas and Florida face possible executions. Death penalty appears valid in 13 other states with 158 condemned convicts. 155 convicts faced executions in North Carolina and LA. Death penalty appears invalid in 16 other states. Charts list states. Prisoners in states with invalid death penalty will probably be spared and get life sentences. [President-elect International Association of Police Chiefs Ed DAVIS - says decision made to protect human lives. No. of murder victims to be reduced by ruling.] [Const. attorney Anthony AMSTERDAM - criticizes court's decision.]
REPORTER: Fred Graham Artist: Aggie Whelan

(Studio) 615 are on death rows in US.
REPORTER: Walter Cronkite

(Raiford, Florida) Florida State Prison representatives inform 73 on death row of court's decision. Reporter describes men's reactions. [Death row inmate Chas. PROFFITT - expected court's decision.] Governor Reuben Askew and Florida Clemency Bd. to review each case. Executions will resume in 3-6 mos.
REPORTER: Bruce Hall

(LA) State prison visited. [Johnny ROSS - comments on his feelings re: decision.] [Claude WOODS - comments on ruling.] [Gary TYLER - feels good about court decision.] Prisoners on death row feel capital punishment is cruel.

(Studio) 3 president candidates are on record as favoring capital punishment.
REPORTER: Walter Cronkite

Cronkite, Walter;
Graham, Fred;
Hall, Bruce;
Lee, Candice

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