Death Penalty


The Oregon Justice Resource Center opposes the death penalty (capital punishment) in all circumstances. The death penalty is the ultimate, irreversible denial of civil liberties. The OJRC participates in strategic and impact litigation, engages in community outreach, and facilitates law students' pro bono work with capital defenders.

The Goals of the OJRC are:
  • To repeal the death penalty in Oregon and to abolish the death penalty in the United States.
  • To improve the quality of legal representation and the fairness of capital trials and appeals.
  • To support and promote the use of a life sentence (true life) as an alternative to the death penalty in response to aggravated murder because it is an effective and sufficient punishment.
  • To promote the research, education and discussion of issues relating to the abolition of the death penalty.
The OJRC opposes the death penalty for the following reasons:
  • The death penalty is applied arbitrarily.
  • The death penalty is applied disproportionately against the poor and minorities.
  • The death penalty creates an unacceptable risk of executing innocent people. Since 1976, more than 140 individuals have been released from death row and states have likely executed innocent people.
  • The death penalty diverts valuable resources resulting in a less efficient and effective criminal justice system
  • The death penalty does not deter crime.