CALL 205.538.3340

The Law Office of J.D. Lloyd Logo Because There’s Hope After the Trial


After The Trial Blog

The After The Trial blog presents insights on ongoing and recent trials around the state of Alabama, including weekly criminal law round-ups.

Is Alabama’s Death Penalty Scheme on Life Support?

J.D. Lloyd - Thursday, January 14, 2016

Today, by an 8-1 vote (Justice Alito dissenting), the US Supreme Court struck down Florida's death penalty sentencing scheme in Hurst v Florida . This is huge news in Alabama as our death penalty sentencing scheme is very similar.
Under Florida law, a capital offense only exposes a defendant to a punishment of life imprisonment without possibility of parole (“LWOP”). A defendant can be sentenced to death only after the court makes additional findings. Essentially, after the guilt phase, a court conducts a sentencing hearing where a jury will make a sentencing recommendation of LWOP or death. This recommendation is purely advisory. Then, the sentencing judge makes a determination of whether to impose LWOP or death.
The Court found this scheme violates Ring v. Arizona, which held that all facts necessary to impose death must be found by the jury. Only judicial -- and not jury -- fact-finding can expose a defendant to death under Florida law. Pursuant to Ring , this scheme violates the Sixth Amendment.
In Alabama, we have a similar scheme; however, by statute, a capital conviction exposes a defendant to LWOP or death -- a Florida conviction, standing alone, only exposes a defendant to LWOP. After receiving a recommendation from the jury, the Alabama judge makes the final determination of what sentence to impose. So the sentencing decision still falls upon the judge in Alabama.
Whether the Alabama system holds a distinction without a real difference from the Florida law will be litigated in the very near future. Regardless, the reins have been tightened a little more on the death penalty.
For more information on the decision, click here.



If you or someone you know has been convicted of wrongful criminal charges, there is hope after the trial. Contact us today by clicking HERE.



Recent Posts


US Supreme Court Update debit card skimming scams tarrant alabama campbell v state fairfield alabama, heflin alabama alabama oneonta alabama dothan alabama towles v state heritage christian university utah supreme court brendan dassey, steve avery, making a murderer, scotus, netflix foley alabama home repair fraud assault fraud npr russell calhoun netflix mulga alabama maryland court of special appeals judicial override Tracie Todd cullman alabama implied consent serial Malone v State capital offenses aiding and abetting capital punishment dekalb county alabama ex parte briseno editorial smith v state Glaze v State kenneth eugene billups ake v oklahoma death penalty eighth amendment, fort payne alabama narcotics investigation Gardendale Alabama arson talladega superspeedway fraudulent checks criminal justice reform, christmas shooting brian fredick lucas fake kidnapping, moore v texas attempted murder eleventh circuit ruling shoplifting florence alabama strickland v washington Wesley Adam Whitworth Rule 32 economic growth making a murderer sheffield v state christian guitierez st clair county alabama criminal justice nathan woods montgomery alabama embezzlement pelham alabama Hillary Clinton, gadsden alabama brady v maryland lamar county constitutional law, hall v florida court of criminal appeal releases Kareem Dacar Gaymon OJ Simpson Made in America bessemer alabama dora alabama death penalty, bernard v north dakota sexual assault shelby county drug smuggling armed robbery alfonso morris concealed carry mcwilliams v dunn Briarwood Presbyterian Church court of criminal appeals ferguson missouri calhoun county alabama birmingham alabama blountsville alabama LWOP south carolina operation bullseye crime of passion warrior alabama second amendment rainbow city alabama brendan dassey habeas corpus relief social media Mike Hubbard drug activity stoves v state public assistance fraud hurst v florida Thomas Hardiman hurst mandamus court systems, fourth amendment department of justice, baltimore city circuit court adnan syed, eugene lee jones v state Adamsville alabama Neil Gorsuch Lucky D Arcade Kay Ivey unlawful manufacturing eric sterling peyton pruitt brookside alabama constitutional violations betton v state scotus battles v state Dylann Roof mountain brook alabama madison alabama tuscaloosa alabama Tommy Arthur Joshua Reese parole aziz sayyed underage drinking animal cruelty debtor prison morgan county alabama midazolam Stephen Breyer Alonzo Ephraim 2016 election, cherokee county alabama abduction marion county murder stanley brent chapman fultondale alabama moving violations Pleasant Grove Alabama New York Times operation crackdown hoover alabama church robberies nicholas hawkins mobile alabama capital murder § 13A-3-23 Donald Trump, kimberly alabama bailey v us street racing sarah koenig § 13A-3-23(d) immunity hearing apprendi v new jersey legende v state state of arizona drug crimes Eutaw Alabama alabama criminal law roundup robberies mike gilotti pruitt v state West Alabama Justice Sotomayor minor offenses identity theft jerry bohannon Easter john earle redfearn IV v state 28 U.S.C. § 2254 illegal gun carry albertville alabama burglary huntsville alabama negligent homicide sentencing law and policy blog summaries morris alabama Benn v State hoax destructive devices anniston alabama, sixth amendment levins v state decatur alabama car accident homicide Alabaster alabama criminal mischief avondale alabama Guy Terrell Junior Woods v State road rage domestic violence Jefferson County Alabama homicide rate shooting limestone county alabama drug busts terell corey mcmullin self defense drug seizure Xavier Beasley baldwin county alabama Fentanyl asia mcclain Marengo County Alabama birchfield v north dakota springville alabama abuse drug trafficking, steve avery boaz alabama illegal gambling blount county alabama mount olive alabama hanceville alabama benjamin todd acton kidnapping trussville alabama alabama supreme court William Pryor lethal injection drugs drug possession, domestic abuse Walker County Alabama texas Samuel Alito pell city alabama adger alabama edwards v arizona keith v state theft of property state of alabama clarence thomas OJ Simpson gun rights SCOTUS, greene county alabama huntsville Ingmire v State pinson alabama lauderdale county alabama prostitution sting mccalla alabama Etowah County Alabama, abandonment department of justice alabama law enforcement agency theft lethal injection breaking and entering banville v state executions shooting death utah v strieff bomb threat the mannequin challenge CCA update gun control forced isolation felony assaults endangerment of a child ring v arizona warrantless blood draws Sardis Alabama Shonda Walker, beylund v north dakota



These recoveries and testimonials are not an indication of future results. Every case is different, and regardless of what friends, family, or other individuals may say about what a case is worth, each case must be evaluated on its own facts and circumstances as they apply to the law. The valuation of a case depends on the facts, the injuries, the jurisdiction, the venue, the witnesses, the parties, and the testimony, among  other factors. Furthermore, no representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.

Get Free Legal Advice  Contact us for a complimentary legal consultation

I am interested in scheduling a free legal consultation and receiving additional information.

Submitting Form...

The server encountered an error.

Thank you, your  entry has been  received.

© 2017 The Law Office of J.D. Lloyd, LLC. All Rights Reserved. |


As required by Rule 7.2(e), Alabama Rules of Professional Conduct, no representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.