State Supreme Court hears arguments about death penalty moratorium

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PHILADELPHIA, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Supreme Court held a hearing Thursday about Governor Tom Wolf’s moratorium on the death penalty.

A lawyer in Philadelphia’s District Attorney’s Office argued Wolf’s reprieves to death row inmates are unconstitutional.

Wolf’s attorney told justices the governor has the power to grant reprieves while a task force conducts a study on the state’s capital punishment system.

The court battle centers around a man who was supposed to be executed in March for beating another man to death more than 30 years ago.

That man, and two others, received reprieves from Governor Wolf this year.

Another legal challenge by Attorney General Kathleen Kane is pending in the state Supreme Court.

182 people are on death row in Pennsylvania.

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