I've gone on record before as saying that is I ever find myself in legal trouble, there isn't a legal system in the world I would rather face than the United State Legal System. Conversely, if me or mine were the victims of a serious crime, I would pick just about anywhere else in the world to see the perpetrator tried. Our system is set up so that there is more chance an guilty person will go free than an innocent person will go to jail.
Capital convictions are even tougher to get, and tougher still to get carried out. Recently, state budget issues have entered into the discussion, with several studies and surveys proving that it is cheaper to keep someone in jail for life than to execute them.
All that leads to things like this, where you have a guy toss gasoline on people at a New Years Party, then light them on fire, killing 6 people. Today, he was sentenced to 198 years in prison.
Now...I am impressed that they have a conviction already...it's only been 9 months, so getting a First Degree Murder Conviction this fast is the type of thing that usually only happens on Law and Order...but what sense does a 198 year sentence make?
You mean to tell me it would be that much harder to get a death sentence than a 198 year sentence? That's just lame. I'm not disputing all the surveys and studies. A look at the timelines and the number of appeals can prove that to anyone...I'm just not convinced that sentencing folks to 198 year prison terms is the right answer, and not trying to modernize/improve the way we follow through on capital crime convictions...maybe limit things to three appeals...kind of a three strikes and you're out deal...