Over 700 men and women sit on California’s death row, awaiting a penalty that hasn’t been meted out since 2006. They will continue to wait, as Governor Gavin Newsom declared Wednesday he is pausing the death penalty for the duration of his governorship.
Newsom signed the executive order Wednesday granting a reprieve to the state’s 737 death row inmates; it doesn’t change any convictions or sentences and won’t allow anyone to be released from prison. The order also repeals California’s lethal injection protocols and closes the state’s never-before-used death chamber at a state prison.
“I do not believe that a civilized society can claim to be a leader in the world as long as its government continues to sanction the premeditated and discriminatory execution of its people,” Newsom said in a statement. “The death penalty is inconsistent with our bedrock values and strikes at the very heart of what it means to be a Californian.”
Among the 737 death row inmates is an assortment of California’s most infamous criminals, from the killer of 12-year-old Polly Klaas to “The Dating Game Killer.”
Click through the gallery above to see some of the state’s most infamous death row residents.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/san-quentin-death-row-inmates-california-13685073.php.