No death penalty for child rapists - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

No death penalty for child rapists

By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

June 26, 2008

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Child rapists cannot be sentenced to death. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled yesterday that it's unconstitutional. Their  stems from a Louisiana case where Patrick Kennedy was convicted and sentenced to death for raping his eight year old stepdaughter.

Chief Assistant District Attorney Greg Edwards says he believes the court made a terrible mistake in taking away the death penalty which may have deterred some child rapists.  He said, "The offender can kidnap, rape, torture, chain up, attempt to kill the child and not be held accountable by the death penalty as a potential sentence by the jury.  I can't think of any crime that's worse than a child rapist, particularly when young have children and we've seen cases with children as young as infants that have been sexually molested and raped by adults."

Unlike Louisiana, Georgia requires that a defendant have a previous rape conviction or some other aggravating factor in order to be subject to the death penalty.

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