High Court Rejects Death Penalty For Child Rape

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

AUSTIN (AP) - Texas lawmakers in 2007 approved the death penalty
for some repeat child rapists as a get-tough measure against
worst-case offenders.
Legislators took the action despite warnings it would be ruled
unconstitutional.
A divided U.S. Supreme Court today struck down the law -- in a
Louisiana case.
The high court ruled the death penalty in child rape cases
violates the Constitution's ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
The Texas Association Against Sexual Assault, a statewide
nonprofit victim advocacy group representing 80 rape crisis
centers, applauded the ruling.
Governor Rick Perry says Texas must abide by the decision. But
Perry says Texas will keep pushing for tough sentences for child
molesters.
The law still allows prosecutors to seek life in prison without
parole.
The Texas law had allowed the death penalty for offenders twice
convicted of raping children under 14.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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