The death penalty in America is a broken process from start to finish. Death sentences are predicted not by the heinousness of the crime but by the poor quality of the defense lawyers, the race of the accused or the victim, and the county and state in which the crime occurred. Time and time again, we have proven that the criminal justice system fails to protect the innocent and persons with serious mental disabilities and illnesses from execution. Even the administration of executions is utterly flawed: Every method of execution comes with an intolerably high risk of extreme pain and torture.

It fails to protect the innocent: over 150 people across the nation have been exonerated from death row since the 1970s.

Public support for the death penalty is falling; the numbers of new death sentences and executions are both rapidly decreasing. The time has come for Missouri to end this failed experiment.