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Florida Senate narrowly votes down death penalty change

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

A sharply divided Florida Senate is rejecting a proposal to require a unanimous jury recommendation in death penalty cases.

The Senate voted twice Wednesday on whether to require all 12 jurors to agree on death sentences. The proposal was rejected by votes of 22-18 and 23-17.

Florida doesn’t require unanimous jury recommendations. But the Legislature is poised to change the law, requiring at least 10 out of 12 to recommend execution in order for it to be carried out.

The Senate originally wanted to require all jurors to agree on a death sentence. But senators agreed to switch to 10 jurors as part of a compromise with the House.

The Legislature is rewriting the death penalty law after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last month that the current method is unconstitutional.

Republished with permission of the Associated Press.

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