Gov. Wolf declares moratorium on death penalty
HARRISBURG (WPMT)-Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Friday announced a moratorium on the death penalty in the state until he can review the anticipated report of the Pennsylvania Task Force and Advisory Commission on Capital Punishment.
The Democrat said his decision came after “significant consideration and reflection.” He also said his decision is based on a flawed system that has been proven to be an endless cycle of court proceedings as well as ineffective, unjust, and expensive.
The moratorium will remain in effect until the commission has given its recommendations.
Wolf granted a temporary reprieve to inmate Terrance Williams, who was scheduled to be executed on March 4, 2015.
In a news release, Governor Wolf said he will grant a reprieve – not a commutation – in each future case in which an execution for a death row inmate is scheduled, establishing an effective moratorium on the death penalty in Pennsylvania. For death row inmates, the conditions and confinement will not change, Wolf said.
Pennsylvania has not executed an inmate since 1999. There have been eight inmates executed this year in the U.S., according to the Washington D.C.-based criminal justice nonprofit.