The Washington Post

New Hampshire won’t repeal the death penalty

New Hampshire will keep the death penalty after all, despite coming very close to becoming the last state in New England to abolish capital punishment.

The New Hampshire State Senate voted Thursday to leave the death penalty intact; the final tally was a tie, according to the Associated Press, which means the repeal failed by a single vote.

It appeared, for a time, that the Granite State was close to repealing the death penalty. The state’s House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed the repeal, while Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) has also said she supported the repeal. (New Hampshire has come close before: A death penalty repeal passed both chambers in 2000 but was vetoed by then-Gov. Jeanne Shaheen; another repeal in 2009 passed the state’s house but never made it through the senate.)

The death penalty is on the decline in this country, with drops in the number of executions and the public support for capital punishment.  Had New Hampshire abolished the death penalty, it would have become the 19th state in the country to ban the practice and the seventh state since 2007. (Connecticut abolished it in 2012, leaving New Hampshire as the lone state in New England that still has the death penalty.)

One inmate sits on death row in New Hampshire: Michael Addison. He was convicted of fatally shooting a police officer in 2006 and sentenced to death.


Mark Berman covers national news for The Washington Post and anchors Post Nation, a destination for breaking news and stories from around the country.

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