Summary: H.R.596 — 102nd Congress (1991-1992)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.596. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in House (01/22/1991)

Subjects to execution persons who, within the District of Columbia: (1) commit first degree murder; (2) murder a law enforcement officer while such officer is engaged in official duties or because of the status of an individual as an officer; or (3) engage in conduct during the course of a continuing criminal enterprise and thereby knowingly cause an individual's death.

Directs the Government to notify the defendant a reasonable amount of time before trial or the court's acceptance of a guilty plea of its intent to seek the death penalty. Requires that, once a guilty verdict is rendered, a separate sentencing hearing be held at which there must be a unanimous finding, that, in addition to murder, specified aggravating factors, such as a previous murder conviction, commission of the murder for money, or torture of the victim, exist which outweigh specified mitigating factors and justify execution.

Requires that the jury be notified that regardless of its findings it is never required to impose the death sentence and that it may not consider the race, color, religious beliefs, national origin or sex of the defendant or victim in passing sentence.

Prohibits the execution of minors, the mentally retarded, or certain mentally disabled individuals.

Authorizes a sentence of life imprisonment without parole for a capital crime.

Sets forth death sentence appeal rights.

Affords indigent defendants charged with a capital crime the benefit of an experienced criminal attorney until the execution of judgment.

Prohibits correctional employees from being forced to participate in an execution that is against their moral or religious convictions.