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Fri., Sept. 10, 2010, 3:16 a.m.

When is capital punishment mandated?

Spokesman-Review AP
Spokesman-Review AP

Good morning, Netizens...

Cal Coburn Brown was executed early today by lethal injection for the rape, torture and murder of a Seattle-area woman, in Washington state’s first use of capital punishment in nine years.

Prison officials say Brown, 52, died at 12:56 a.m. PDT, after a four-member team injected a lethal one-drug cocktail in the execution chamber of the Washington State Penitentiary.

There are some who believe that justice finally was served in the case of Brown, and then there are others who refuse to believe that the taking of a life for a life is wrong. During his appeals process, Brown claimed that he suffered from bipolar disorder, and should have his sentence commuted to life.

Brown, who is from San Jose, Calif., had a history of violence against women, including a 1977 conviction in California for assaulting a woman with a knife at a shopping center. He also served 7 1/2 years — the minimum sentence — for assaulting another woman in Oregon in1984.

It remains to be seen whether capital punishment should be allowed to continue or be discontinued entirely. It is, after all, another form of murder, albeit one sanctioned by the law, especially when circumstances of mental illness are involved.

When do we stop capital punishment?


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Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.