Death Penalty debate starts today

State lawmakers will hear testimony on a proposal to let Nebraska put inmates to death by lethal injection. Members of the Legislature’s Judiciary Committee are holding a hearing┬áthis afternoon on Sen. Mike Flood of Norfolk’s bill (LB36).
They’ll also consider a bill (LB306) that calls for repealing the death penalty altogether in the state. Gov. Dave Heineman wants to make lethal injection the state’s most severe penalty. In February, the state Supreme Court struck down use of the electric chair, calling it cruel and unusual punishment. It was Nebraska’s only method of executing prisoners.