Former US AG to chair Md. death penalty commission

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Former US AG to chair Md. death penalty commission

Post  Jennie on Fri Jul 11, 2008 12:45 am

Former US AG to chair Md. death penalty commission

A former U.S. Attorney General will be chairman of the Maryland Commission on Capital Punishment.

Benjamin Civiletti was attorney general from 1979 to 1981 under former President Jimmy Carter.

The commission was established in the last legislative session. It has been tasked with studying racial, jurisdictional and socio-economic disparities.

It will also examine the risk of innocent people being executed.

The commission will submit a report on its findings and recommendations to the General Assembly by Dec. 15.

There are 22 other members of the commission. They have been chosen to represent diverse views on the death penalty.

(source: Associated Press)


Civiletti to head Capital Punishment Commission

2 months after the Maryland Commission on Capital Punishment was signed into law, Gov. Martin O’Malley appointed former U.S. Attorney General Benjamin Civiletti as chairman of the commission, along with 22 other members.

"I come in with views, but they are not fixed views," Civiletti said when asked if he is for or against the death penalty.

Gov. Martin O'Malley, who announced the commission members in front of a small gathering in the Legislative Services Building, said he was "confident" that Civiletti and the other commission members "will make fair and unbiased recommendations to the members of the Maryland General Assembly on this important issue."

"General Civiletti's integrity and long history of public service will be assets to the commission," O'Malley said.

The commission — which was created by an act of the General Assembly in the 2008 legislative session — is tasked with studying all aspects of capital punishment as currently and historically administered in the state.

A final report on its findings and recommendations will be submitted to the legislature on or before Dec. 15.

Civiletti was selected by the governor, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller and House Speaker Michael Busch.

The rest of the group is comprised of 13 gubernatorial and 9 non-gubernatorial appointments.

The governor's selections are:

Chief Bernadette DiPino, representing the Maryland Chiefs of Police

Percel Odel Alston Jr., representing the Maryland Fraternal Order of Police

Noel Lewis Godfrey, Correctional Officer Representative

Kirk Noble Bloodsworth, former state prisoner who was exonerated

Reverend Alan M. Gould, Sr., representing the religious community

Reverend Denis J. Madden, Archdiocese of Baltimore, representing the religious community

Rabbi Mark G. Loeb, Beth El Congregation, representing the religious community

Rick N. Prothero, brother of victim, representing family members of murder victim

Vicki A. Schieber, mother of victim, representing family member of murder victim

Oliver Smith, father of victim, representing family member of murder victim

Matthew Campbell, representing member of the public

David Kendall, Partner, Williams and Connolly LLP, representing meber of the public

Delegate Sandy Rosenberg, District 41, Baltimore City, representing member of the public

Appointments by Senate President Miller:

Senator Jamie Raskin

Senator James N. Robey

Appointments by Speaker of the House Busch:

Delegate Adrienne A. Jones

Delegate William Frank

Other appointments as required by the law establishing the Commission:

Shannetta Paskel, representing Attorney General Douglas Gansler

The Honorable William Spellbring

Secretary Gary Maynard, Secretary of Public Safety and Correctional Services

Katy O'Donnell, representative of the Office of the Public Defender

Scott Shellenberger, Baltimore County State's Attorney, who has prosecuted a death penalty case

(source: The Daily Record)

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