The New Yorker returns to look again at Alabama's criminal Justice System

This piece centers on judicial override, the practice of allowing judges rather than juries to have the final say over which defendants get the death penalty.



In Alabama, Judges Play God: Currently, Florida and Delaware are the only other states with override, but their judges use the provision very sparingly, and when they do it’s almost always to convert death sentences to life. Nobody in Delaware is on death row because of override, and it has been fifteen years since a Florida judge has exercised override to impose the death penalty. In thirty-one of the past thirty-two years, Alabama’s judges have condemned someone to death through override at least once.

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