Serial killer Anthony Sowell was sentenced last week to die for his crimes---the horrific killings of eleven women he had lured to his house of horrors on Imperial Avenue in Cleveland.
For the families of the dead women, there was relief and joy. But for Sowell and for the state---the case is far from over. Sowell is scheduled to die from lethal injection in October of next year…but he won't…and chances are he will grow old, well-fed and cared for in prison. Sowell's death sentence entitles him to an automatic appeal---and additional appeals can drag on for years. In fact, the time spent on death row in this country has doubled in the past twenty years. Sowell is likely to still be living fifteen years from now---and maybe longer. And taxpayers will foot the bill.
Fighting appeals often costs the state a half million dollars per inmate and that's on top of the twenty-six thousand dollars a year it costs to house and feed the killers. It seems to us that in death penalty cases like this…one where the evidence is clear and distinct...the system should provide for the speedy carriage of justice. His victims deserve that.
Write and let me know what you think. I'm Bill Applegate and here's the address.