Written on: May 4, 2015
We recently wrote to Governor Tom Wolf to express gratitude for the executive action he has taken regarding the implementation of the Death Penalty in Pennsylvania. We received this response today and are very grateful that he is taking this issue seriously and responsibly. Thank you, Governor Wolf. We will continue to pray for an end to this travesty of justice.
Thank you for your recent correspondence regarding the use of capital punishment. I always appreciate the opportunity to help address issues of concern to Pennsylvania families.
After significant consideration and reflection, I have decided to use my authority as governor to issue temporary reprieves. This is in no way an expression of sympathy for the guilty on death row, all of whom have been convicted of committing heinous crimes. Affected inmates will remain on death row and with the same imprisonment guidelines.
Our current flawed system has been proven to be an endless cycle of court proceedings as well as ineffective and expensive. Since the reinstatement of the death penalty, 152 people have been exonerated from death row nationwide, including six in Pennsylvania. Recognizing the seriousness of these concerns, the Senate established the bipartisan Pennsylvania Task Force and Advisory Commission to conduct a study of the effectiveness of capital punishment in Pennsylvania. I will continue to issue reprieves until this commission has produced its recommendation and all concerns are addressed satisfactorily.
Thank you again for sharing your thoughts with me.