House Bill 165
150th General Assembly (Present)
House Judiciary 5/16/19
Committee Hearing takes place within twelve legislative days.
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 11 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE EXTREME CRIMES PROTECTION ACT.
This act will be known as the Extreme Crimes Protection Act. This Act revises Delaware's death penalty statute to ensure its compliance with the United States Constitution, as interpreted by the United State Supreme Court in Hurst v. Florida, and by the Delaware Supreme Court in Rauf v. State. In accord with those cases, this Act will require that before a death sentence can be imposed, a jury (unless the Defendant waives their right to one) must first determine unanimously and beyond a reasonable doubt: that at least 1 statutory aggravating circumstance exists; which (if any) statutory and non-statutory aggravating circumstances alleged by the State exist; and whether all of the aggravating circumstances found to exist outweigh all of the mitigating circumstances found to exist. This Act also revises Delaware's death penalty statute to comply with the United State Supreme Court's holding in Hall v. Florida, interpreting standards set forth in Atkins v. Virginia. This Act adopts the term "intellectual disability" used by the United State Supreme Court. This Act recognizes developing trends in death penalty jurisprudence and the American Bar Association's Resolution 122A (2006), of August 8, 2006, by prohibiting the imposition of the death penalty upon a person who has been found "guilty, but mentally ill", as defined by Title 11 § 401. This Act also narrows the scope of the most commonly used statutory aggravating circumstances - those applicable in cases involving defendants with previous convictions for violent felonies and murders committed during the commission of other enumerated felonies. Several other statutory aggravating circumstances have been combined to eliminate duplication, eliminated entirely, or otherwise clarified.
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Takes effect upon being signed into law