Sen. Kissel: Gov. Malloy’s repeal of death penalty will “provide mercy to killers who offered none to their victims.” []

April 25, 2012

Article as it appeared on

Malloy signs death penalty repeal
Updated: Wednesday, 25 Apr 2012, 3:20 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 25 Apr 2012, 2:27 PM EDT

Mark Davis

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — On the day that another Quinnipiac Poll showed a clear majority of Connecticut voters supporting the death penalty Governor Malloy signed the repeal bill into law.

He did it behind closed doors with no public ceremony. His office did not want any images of anything that appeared to be a celebration.

“I understand that this is a very sensitive issue and I’m trying to do it in a respectful fashion. That’s all,” Malloy said.

Click here to read Malloy’s full statement
When asked if they favored the death penalty, 62 percent said yes, just 30 percent were opposed.

But when given the choice and people are asked if they favor the death penalty or life without parole the public is evenly split 46 to 46 percent.

“This is a very difficult issue, there are many people who’se relatives were the victims of homicide who support this bill, there are many victims who’se loved ones were, lost their lives and don’t support it,” Malloy said.

An isolated, unused cell block at the Osborn prison in Somers is expected to be used for those now convicted of life in prison, where they will be kept isolated from the general prison population with very restricted privileges.

“We anticipate using that area, there are other areas, also in the old Cheshire, there’s an area similar to that we could use,” said Cmsr. Leo Arnone from the Department of Correction.

The law is not supposed to affect the two convicted Cheshire murderers, Steven Hayes and Joshua Komisarjevksy, or the nine other men on death row at Northern Prison. One of them has been there since 1989 while the endless appeal process goes on.

“Dr. William Petit stood with us to point out that the repeal of the death penalty will provide mercy to killers who offered none to their victims,” said State Sen. John A. Kissel (R-Enfield),a ranking member of the Judiciary Committee in a statement. “Repeal will spare the lives of the 11 murderers who currently sit on Death Row. Repeal eliminates a powerful tool for society to mete out justice to the worst of the worst. Repeal removes the appropriate sanction in certain heinous, cruel and depraved crimes.”