Death Sentences Dropping

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Hurray for DNA! Thanks in large part to all those guys who keep getting exonerated from death row, the number of death sentences juries have handed down in execution-happy Texas has dropped by more than half in the last ten years, from 40 in 1996 to just 14 this year. That fits the pattern nationwide, where death sentences have fallen from about 300 per year in the 1990s to 125 in 2005. Even Texas’ Harris County, which has sent more residents to Death Row than any other jurisdiction in America in recent decades, only sentenced three people to be executed this year.

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Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

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