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Women and Capital Punishment Research Papers

Research papers on women and capital punishment reveal some surprising statistics. Have Paper Masters custom write your research paper for any criminal justice course you need.

It does appear that a disproportionate number of women are on death row. Females who have been incarcerated for committing a capital crime make up an extremely small number as compared to men. This most likely reflects society’s attitude that women do not tend to be aggressive or violent. However, there are women on death row who have been convicted of heinous crimes, such as murdering with a pick-ax. 

Women and Capital PunishmentMany individuals that believe in capital punishment do not believe that women should receive death. Karla Fay Tucker is a case in point. Because she was a woman who had found Jesus, many called for her death sentence to be commuted to life. Yet, her crime consisted of taking a pick-ax and stabbing a man and a woman with it. She struck the man over forty times with the ax and told the police that she had an orgasm from her activity. Despite this, there was a public outcry to let her live. Consequently, many women may not receive the death penalty as equally as males do for the same kind and intensity of criminal activity.

How Women End Up on Death Row

Research from Paper Masters notes that prosecutors must first de-humanize females in order to get juries to agree to the death penalty. One typical way of doing this is pointing out that the woman is a lesbian. Research does not demonstrate that lesbians are more likely to commit murder. However, they are more likely to receive the death penalty.

Paper Masters research papers offer a different perspective on women and capital punishment. He suggests that women are discriminated with regard to receiving the death penalty but he does not conclude that women have a favorable position. Instead, women “are punished primarily for violating dominant norms of gender correctness”. Oddly, when women were convicted of witchcraft in the 1500s, they generally were drowned or burned at the stake. Their crimes were the violation of social norms for females.  

Statistics on Women and Capital Punishment

  • Approximately ten percent of the individuals arrested for murder are women.
  • Only two percent of these people arrested receive the death penalty at trial.
  • A fourth of these individuals make it to death row.
  • Only “ten of 820 (1.2%) persons actually [are] executed between 1976 and 2002”.
  • As of July 1, 2003, there were 49 women on death row.
    • This constitutes 1.39% of the total death row population of about 3,517 persons
    • Less than 0.1% of the approximately 50,000 women in prisons in the United States
  • No women were executed in 2003, while 65 men were executed.   

Not only are fewer women convicted of a capital offense, in general, they never make it past the appeals process . Almost half of female capital convictions are changed to life sentences or the conviction reversed on appeals. Many states never carry out the penalty when it is supported on appeal.

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