Death Penalty Calendar

h/t to Prof. Rick Halperin

January 1
Texas re-legalizes death penalty post-Furman, 1974

January 5
Westley Dodd becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1993 Washington (he’s hanged)

January 6
George Mercer becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1989 Missouri

January 6
Keith Wells becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1994 Idaho

January 11
Joseph Shaw becomes 1st state inmate to be executed in modern era – 1985
South Carolina.

January 17
Anniversary of the resumption of executions in the United States, in 1977.
Gary Gilmore was executed by the State of Utah after giving up his
appeals. He had been convicted of the murder of Ben Bushnell and Max
Jenson. Visit www.abolition.org for information and activities relating to
this anniversary.

January 22
Mark Hopkinson becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1992 Wyoming

February 19
Wilford Berry becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1999 Ohio

February 27
Tennessee re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1974.

March 1
International Death Penalty Abolition Day. This marks the date when
Michigan became the first English-speaking territory in the world to
abolish the death penalty (1847).

March 1
The United States Supreme Court declares the execution of juvenile
offenders to be unconstitutional – 2005 Simmons v Roper

March 5
Alabama re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1976.

March 9
Steve Judy becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern era
– 1981 Indiana

March 14
Steven Pennell becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1992 Delaware

March 16
James Hutchins becomes 1st state inmate to be executed in modern era –
1984 North Carolina.

March 23
Arkansas re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1973.

March 28
Georgia re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1973.

April 6
Donald Harding becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1992 Arizona

April 19
Robert Glen Coe becomes 1st state inmate to be executed in the modern era
– 2000 Tennessee.

April 22
John Evans becomes 1st state inmate executed in the modern era – 1983
Alabama

April 22
Robert Harris becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1992 California

April 23
Mississippi re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1974.

May 13
Michael Ross becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 2005 Connecticut

May 17
Oklahoma re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1973.

May 17
John Thanos becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1994 Maryland

May 25
John Spenkelink becomes the first state inmate to be executed in modern
era – 1979 Florida

June 1
North Carolina re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1977.

June 11
Timothy McVeigh becomes the first federal inmate to be executed in the
modern era – 2001 (Federal executions occur in Indiana)

June 18
John Swindler becomes 1st state inmate to be executed in the modern era –
1990 Arkansas

June 20
The United States Supreme Court declares the execution of persons with
mental retardation to be unconstitutional – 2002 Atkins v Virginia

June 26
The United States Supreme Court declares the execution of persons who are
insane to be unconstitutional – 1986 Ford v Wainwright

June 26
International Day of Survivors of Torture – includes innocent persons
released from USA death rows.

June 29 – July 2
Annual Fast & Vigil to Abolish the Death Penalty at the U.S. Supreme
Court. Visit www.cuadp.org for details.

June 29
Anniversary of the Furman v. Georgia decision in 1972, in which the U.S.
Supreme Court found the death penalty to be arbitrary and capricious. More
than 600 condemned inmates had their death sentences reduced to life. All
states were required to rewrite their death penalty laws.

July 1
Harold McQueen becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1997 Kentucky

July 2
Louisiana re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1973.

July 2
South Carolina re-legalizes death penalty, post-Furman, 1974.

July 2
Anniversary of the Gregg v. Georgia decision in 1976, which allowed the
resumption of executions in the United States.

July 11
Elijah Page becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 2007 South Dakota

August 10
Frank Coppola becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1982 Virginia

September 2
Jimmy Lee Gray becomes 1st state inmate to be executed in the modern era –
1983 Mississippi.

September 2
Harold Otey becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1994 Nebraska

September 6
Douglas Wright becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the
modern era – 1996 Oregon

September 10
Charles Coleman becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the
modern era – 1990 Oklahoma.

September 12
Charles Walker becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1990 Illinois

October 10
World Day Against the Death Penalty, organized by the World Coalition
Against the Death Penalty (WCADP). The World Day is the Coalition’s
primary annual campaigning event against the death penalty and consists of
local actions around the world. For more information, visit
www.worldcoalition.org.

October 13
Gary Davis becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern era
– 1997 Colorado

October 22
Jesse Bishop becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 1979 Nevada

November 6
Terry Clark becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the modern
era – 2001 New Mexico

November 20
Universal Children’s Day (UN). This is a good opportunity to call for the
worldwide abolition of the death penalty for juvenile offenders.

December 2

Kenneth Boyd becomes the 1000th US death row inmate to be executed in the
modern era – 2005 North Carolina

December 7
Anniversiary of the first use of Lethal Injection in the U.S. that
occurred in Texas (1982); Charles Brooks becomes 1st state inmate to be
executed in modern era – 1982 Texas.

December 10
International Human Rights Day, commemorating the anniversary of the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Contact your local Amnesty
International chapter to get involved, call 800-AMNESTY, or visit
www.amnestyusa.org.

December 14
Robert Williams becomes the first state inmate to be executed in the
modern era- 1983 Louisiana.

December 15
John Smith becomes the state inmate to be executed in the modern era –
1983 Georgia

About the Author

Hooman Hedayati

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