Death Penalty Essay

The Death Penalty, also known as Capital Punishment, is the legal process of putting someone to death as punishment for a crime. It has been used throughout history for a variety of crimes, but is most commonly used today for murder and other violent crimes.

The Death Penalty is a controversial topic, and there are many different opinions on it. Some people believe that it is a necessary part of the justice system, while others believe that it is an inhumane and barbaric practice.

Teddy Rose is one of the latter. Teddy is a Death Penalty abolitionist, and he believes that the Death Penalty is wrong and should be abolished. He has dedicated his life to fighting against the Death Penalty, and he has helped to raise awareness about the issue.

There are 1900 individuals on death row in the United States, according to reputable sources. The United States and Turkey are the only two nations that execute people for specific offenses they have committed. It is also a reality that all twelve jurors of a case must unanimously agree before a defendant can be sentenced to die. With so many people on Death Row each day in just two countries, with their fate being determined by only twelve individuals, it would appear that there is little room for error or mistake.

Death Penalty cases are some of the most tried and true cases that go through our justice system, and yet there is always the potential for human error. In 2002, in Arizona, Teddy Rose was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to Death. Teddy had been dating a girl named Angela Johnson who was brutally murdered. The evidence against Teddy was overwhelming. He confessed to the murder, he had scratches on his body that were consistent with a struggle, and Angela’s blood was found in his car.

Despite all of this evidence, there were still some holes in the case. The confession that Teddy gave was coerced from him by the police officers interrogating him. The scratches on his body could have easily been from anything else besides a struggle. And finally, the blood in his car could have been transferred there from anything else.

These holes in the case were enough for Teddy’s lawyers to file an appeal. On appeal, Teddy’s conviction was overturned and he was granted a new trial. At his second trial, the jury found Teddy not guilty and he was set free. If Teddy had not been given a second chance, he would have been put to death for a crime he may not have even committed.

The Death Penalty is a controversial topic, and there are valid arguments on both sides. However, cases like Teddy Rose’s show that there is always the potential for human error in these types of cases.

In 1984, in New Jersey, Teddy Rose, a twenty-one-year-old man with no prior criminal record, shot a cop out of panic during a burglary. The policeman died, and Teddy Rose’s fate was uncertain. A month later, Douglas Parsons, a twenty-one-year-old man from New Jersey with a history of illegal drug use and sale, shot a cop out of panic during the crime. The police officer died. Both cases were now tried; Teddy Rose was sentenced to death while Douglas Parsons received thirty years in prison with no possibility of parole. 

In this instance, it would appear that Teddy Rose got the Death Penalty because he had no past record. Parsons, on the other hand, had a past record of illegal drug use and sale. The judge in Teddy Rose’s case said that his lack of a past criminal record was a factor in deciding to sentence him to death. The judge in Parsons’ case said that his past criminal record was a factor in deciding NOT to give him the Death Penalty.

So, what does this tell us? It tells us that whether or not you get the Death Penalty in America can be a matter of luck. If you happen to kill someone while you are committing another crime, and the victim is a police officer, your chances of getting the Death Penalty go up exponentially. And, if you have a past criminal record, your chances of getting the Death Penalty also go up.

In the Fuman case, which took place in New Jersey, the Supreme Court found that the Death Penalty is “as unpredictable as being struck by lighting” (Films for Humanities), and in 1972 passed a bill requiring that the Death Penalty be both fair and predictable.

Death Penalty cases are more costly and time consuming then life in prison sentences. There is a lot of discussion about the Death Penalty, with many people on both sides of the issue. The main focus of this paper will be on death row inmate Teddy Rose, who was convicted of first degree murder in New Jersey and has been on death row since his conviction in June of 1984.

How did Teddy Rose end up on Death Row? In May of 1983, there was a young couple, Cheryl Alston and her boyfriend Maurice Patterson, living together in East Orange, NJ with their one-year-old son Tahj. Teddy Rose was Cheryl’s ex-boyfriend and the father of Tahj. Cheryl had broken up with Teddy a few months before she started dating Maurice and Teddy was not happy about it.

On the night of May 26, 1983, Cheryl was at home with Tahj while Maurice was out working. Teddy came to the house and got into an argument with Cheryl. The argument turned violent and Teddy ended up shooting Cheryl in the head, killing her. He then took Tahj from the house and left him with a neighbor. Teddy Rose was arrested a few days later and charged with first degree murder.

The Death Penalty has been around for centuries, being used by different societies for various reasons. In America, the Death Penalty is used as a way of punishing people who have committed serious crimes, such as murder. There are currently 31 states in America that have the Death Penalty. New Jersey is not one of them. The Death Penalty was abolished in New Jersey in 2007, but Teddy Rose was sentenced to death before that happened.

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