Latino Legislators Condemn Death Penalty

In a NHCSL resolution, Latino legislators condemn death penalty for many reasons, including:

  • “Racial bias is evident in the cases that are lifted by (majority white) prosecutors to the capital case level. 86% of studies show that when the victim is white, a defendant is more likely to be charged with and sentenced to death.”
  • In “the top ten counties in the US that most actively sentence defendants to death, every single one has large or majority Latino populations.”
  • “The risk of executing an innocent person is higher than ever and evidence suggests that Latinos have been executed despite possible innocence.”
  • Those “states without the death penalty consistently post lower murder rates for both police officers and citizens.”
  • And the “repeal of the death penalty will free up millions of tax dollars trapped in cash-strapped state budgets that could be redirected to violence prevention, combat[]ing implicit bias, or supporting victims of violence in Latino communities.”

The disproportionate and prejudicial application of the death penalty towards Latinos and other minorities, the high costs of this cruel and unusual punishment to our tax payers and the increasing likelihood that innocent people can be wrongfully executed by the states — among many other compelling reasons — led us to raise our voices to call for an end to capital punishment.

— Ángel Cruz,  NHCSL President and Pennsylvania State Representative

Prop 66 Does Nothing to Address These Problems

Prop 66 greatly increases the risk of executing an innocent person. The majority of innocent people who have been wrongfully convicted and sent to death row in the US have been Black and Latino, and two-thirds of California’s death row is people of color. Instead of ensuring everyone gets a fair trial, Prop. 66 is a reckless experiment with justice that will make matters worse.

Prop 66 wastes even more money on our prison system while our schools, hospitals, and other priorities suffer.