Does the death penalty deter others from committing similar crimes?

After completing a thorough investigation into the robbery and serving your search warrant, both of your suspects were found guilty at trial. The next step of the Criminal Justice System (the sentencing phase) will begin. Because victim Roberts was shot in the head and killed, the State is seeking the death penalty for Steve Chapman. He has an extensive violent criminal history (convicted felon), and shows no remorse for victim Roberts or his family.

As the lead detective, you have completed your investigation into the robbery and homicide. You have served the search warrant and found all of the evidence that you were looking for. You and your team have collected all of the evidence and interviewed witnesses, the victim, and the suspects.

Because of your hard work in this case, the State’s Attorney has asked for your thoughts on the method of punishment for Steve Chapman. Compose a professional quality email to the State’s Attorney detailing your thoughts on the following:

  • Is the death penalty a just sentence for this crime? Explain your answer.
  • What alternative punishments might be appropriate (if any)?
  • Does the death penalty deter others from committing similar crimes?
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