Supreme Court paves the way for Kansas death penalty

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling reinstitutes the death penalty in Kansas. Read the Kansas attorney general’s press release and listen to his press conference.

The United States Supreme Court today reversed a December 2004 decision by the Kansas Supreme Court and ruled that the Kansas death penalty statute is constitutional.

In a 5-4 decision, the Court ruled that a state may constitutionally require the death penalty if mitigating and aggravating factors are in equal balance.

On December 17, 2004, the Kansas Supreme Court, on a 4-3 vote, struck down the state’s death penalty statute. Attorney General Kline immediately filed a motion to stay the ruling and indicated his intention to seek a reversal of the state court’s decision by the United States Supreme Court. On December 20, 2004, the Kansas Supreme Court granted that stay.


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