Race-of-Victim Discrepancies in Homicides and Executions, Louisiana 1976-2015
Loyola University New Orleans Journal of Public Interest Law, Volume 17, Fall 2015
16 Pages Posted: 23 Dec 2015 Last revised: 22 Aug 2016
Date Written: August 1, 2015
Black male victims comprise 61 percent of homicide victims in present day Louisiana, yet their killers have been executed in only three cases out of 12,949 homicides since Gregg v. Georgia reinstated the death penalty in 1976. This is less than 6 percent of the execution rate for killers of all other victims, and 1/48th the execution rate for the killers of white women. A thorough analysis of Louisiana's homicides and a complete review of its history of executions, using FBI statistics and the Espy File of national executions, reveals that the ultimate punishment has long been reserved for crimes other than killing black men. New here is the compilation and analysis of a complete database of all 241 Louisiana post-Gregg death verdict cases, including their 316 victims. In these cases, 80 percent of the victims are people other than black males.
Keywords: executions, homicides, death penalty, Louisiana, punishment, death verdicts, black males
JEL Classification: C12, J70, K14
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation