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This thread raises some additional questions:
Death Penalty Information Center: Time on Death Row
When the constitution was written, the time between sentencing and execution could be measured in days or weeks. The average time for a death row inmate has increased over the years. By 1984 it was 6 years from initial sentencing to execution. In 2012 the number had risen to 16 years. Most of this increase is driven by mandatory sentencing reviews that have become the norm, and continual changes in laws and technology that have necessitated reexamination of individual sentences.
Of course the longer time adds to taxpayers expense because many on death row do not have the financial resources to appeal. So legal counsel is assigned. From the above article:
"The years it takes to carry out a death sentence exact a huge toll – on taxpayers, victims’ families and inmates themselves. Yet without thorough appeals, mistakes in death penalty cases would be missed."
Justice Stephen Breyer noted in 1995 "that the “astonishingly long delays” experienced by the inmates were largely a result not of frivolous appeals
on their part, but rather of "constitutionally defective death penalty procedures. Where a delay, measured in decades, reflects the State’s own failure to comply with the Constitution’s demands, the claim that time has rendered the execution inhuman is a particularly strong one.”
Justice Breyer has called the long waits on death row a cruel and unusual punishment: "I have little doubt about the cruelty of so long a period of incarceration under sentence of death."
From the article:
"Psychologists and lawyers in the United States and elsewhere have argued that protracted periods in the confines of death row can make inmates suicidal, delusional and insane. Some have referred to the living conditions on death row – the bleak isolation and years of uncertainty as to time of execution – as the “death row phenomenon,” and the psychological effects that can result as “death row syndrome.”"
Changing the method used to execute a person will not save money. That is the cheapest part. Reducing the time it would take not only save legal costs but also mitigate the "cruel and unusual punishment" of convicted felons living as much as 33 years on death row.
Doing away with the death penalty entirely would satisfy both ends.