State no longer leads nation in executions this year
HOUSTON | The state of Texas, long the nation’s leader in executions, lost that distinction in 2016 and its two most populous counties didn’t send a single convicted killer to death row, according to a new report.
The change is because growing legal and public hesitance to impose the ultimate punishment, according to the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death
Texas juries sent only three convicted killers to death row this year and none of them came from the two most populous counties — Dallas County, and Harris County, which includes Houston.
Those two Texas counties have accounted for more people put to death than any other counties in the nation since the death penalty was reinstated in the U.S. in 1976, according to the Death Penalty Information Center.
Seven convicted killers were given lethal injection in Texas this year, the lowest number since three were executed in 1996.
For the first time since 2002, Texas did not lead or tie for the state with the most executions. Georgia has that distinction for 2016, with nine, as only five states — Georgia, Texas, Missouri, Alabama and Florida — accounted for
the 20 executions nationwide.