Thirty one states currently have the death penalty and 19 states do not have the death penalty.
|STATES WITHOUT THE DEATH PENALTY (19) (YEAR ABOLISHED IN PARENTHESES)|
New Jersey (2007)
New Mexico* (2009)
New York (2007)#
North Dakota (1973)
Rhode Island (1984)^
West Virginia (1965)
* In March 2009, New Mexico voted to abolish the death penalty. However, the repeal was not retroactive, leaving two people on the state’s death row.
** In May 2015, Nebraska voted to abolish the death penalty. The status of the 10 inmates on death row is uncertain at this time. A petition has been submitted to suspend the repeal and put it to a voter referendum.
^ In 1979, the Supreme Court of Rhode Island held that a statute making a death sentence mandatory for someone who killed a fellow prisoner was unconstitutional. The legislature removed the statute in 1984.
# In 2004, the New York Court of Appeals held that a portion of the state’s death penalty law was unconstitutional. In 2007, they ruled that their prior holding applied to the last remaining person on the state’s death row. The legislature has voted down attempts to restore the statute.