Monday, August 29, 2005

Baird Spared

Baird was spared today. Governor Daniels commuted his death sentence to life without parole. Marcia Oddi at the Indiana Law Blog has this quote from the Indianapolis Star about the clemency decision.

Indiana governors have not often commuted death sentences. Governor Kernan commuted Darnell Williams' death sentence last summer, I believe it was. This piece from the Indianapolis Star--again on the inimitable ILB--pointed out that before Williams, clemency hadn't been granted in an Indiana death case since 1956.

That's two in a year. By two different governors. Of two different political parties. As depressing as the flight from Blakely and Booker in both state and federal courts might be (see this recent post by Doug Berman at Sentencing Law & Policy), this is a hopeful political development. Even a reason to be cheerful.

Now, if the wretched "Streamlining Habeas" bill will just go away . . . . Or has it already?

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