According to state officials, the average stay for an inmate on death row in the State of Florida is 14 years.
One local representative said he wants to speed that up to bring faster justice to victims and their families.
As chairman of the criminal justice committee, Fort Walton Beach Rep. Matt Gaetz said he is tired of seeing inmates sit on death row for a lengthy appeals process. He said of the over 400 inmates on the row in the Sunshine State, nearly half have been there over 20 years.
Gaetz said his legislation, House Bill 7083, can deliver a fair appeals process guaranteeing due process in 10 years or less.
"Only the State of California has more people that languish on death row longer than Florida. So it can modernize our system, provide due process and also provide some justice to the family members and victims. We have victim's families who at times are passing away before the killers of their loved ones. One cannot get justice 15, 20 years later," Gaetz said.
Rep. Gaetz said he expects the legislation to go to the house and senate floors within a few weeks.
If signed by Governor Rick Scott, it would affect cases with sentences of death before July 1.
Authorities in Prichard are investigating an attempted smash and grab at a local pharmacy. It happened at Central Discount Drugs on Wilcox Avenue.
Global civil rights icon Nelson Mandela, whose legacy is ending South African apartheid, has died.
Alabama is getting the largest share of $255 million in federal funding to connect more homes and businesses to broadband internet service.
Alabama State University is interviewing three finalists for its presidency. A 15-member search committee is holding talks Friday with Gwendolyn Boyd of John Hopkins University; retired Brig. Gen. Samuel Nichols Jr. of Virginia; and state …
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