So you may have heard that the US Supreme Court is taking a look at how we execute people:
The Supreme Court agreed Monday to review whether Florida’s capital punishment system too easily allows juries to recommend the execution of criminals.Wow -- us and Alabama -- great company to be in!
Florida permits executions based on divided jury votes and doesn’t require a jury to make specific findings regarding the aggravating factors that can justify death. The high court is to decide whether those practices violate of the U.S. Constitution. Alabama is the only other state that allows a divided jury vote for the death penalty.
But no worries -- the Florida Supremes have instituted important structural protections, so back off you DC Big-Gov meddlers:
It has been the Court’s longstanding practice to permit the appellate briefs filed in certain cases relating to the imposition of a sentence of death to exceed the standard page limits set out in rule 9.210. However, this practice, which is specific to the Court’s death penalty cases, has been implemented through the issuance of standard Court orders on a case-by-case basis, rather than as a codified practice set forth in the Florida Rules of Appellate Procedure.Ok underpaid or pro bono long-suffering death penalty litigators -- your five extra pages is assured (but make 'em count)!
New subdivision (a)(6), which we add to rule 9.210, formalizes the Court’s practice of permitting longer appellate briefs in certain cases relating to the imposition of a sentence of death.
Sheesh, why did I wake up all pissed off this morning -- it's Friday: