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Supreme Court: Death Penalty

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Supreme Court: Death Penalty

Supreme Court: Death Penalty

Supreme Court: Death Penalty

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/1145521/145521" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">

NPR's Nina Totenberg reports on today's Supreme Court decision that curbs a judge's ability to impose the death penalty. The court ruled that judges cannot sentence a defendant to death unless a jury has found aggravating factors that make the defendant eligible for death in that state. The decision overturns laws in five states, which gave full responsibility for the sentence to judges. In another case, the justices ruled today that a judge does have the power to find that a defendant used a gun in committing a crime, and to extend the sentence on that basis.