Anti-death penalty rally held in Atlanta - Dallas News |

Anti-death penalty rally held in Atlanta

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Death penalty opponents gathered at the state Capitol on Monday to protest the execution of a Georgia man.

Warren Lee Hill's execution was stayed due to a challenge to the state's recent switch to a one-drug lethal injection procedure. Hill was convicted of killing a fellow prison inmate while behind bars for the murder of his girlfriend.

The state's highest court says it will consider the condemned man's challenge of a change in execution procedure, but Hill's planned execution has reignited the death penalty debate.

Monday's protest came days after a massacre at a Colorado movie theater left 12 people dead. While Colorado prosecutors say they are considering pursuing the death penalty against James Holmes, they have not made a final determination.

Presbyterian minister Ed Loring, who has worked with people on death row for 35 years, says execution is never the answer.

"As we know from the Batman movie, we know that violence is spiraling in our neighborhoods and across this land, and we believe the death penalty is part of that violence," said Loring.

While Michael Capps took part in the protest, he can't say if the death penalty should never be used.

"Does mean that the death penalty right in every case, for everyone has murdered or who has committed an atrocious crime, I'm not sure. I can't say right now," said Capps.  

Most at the rally stood firm in their conviction against capital punishment. Mary Catherine of Georgians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty said she opposed the punishment even in cases such as the Colorado shooting.

"That's not to say we're discounting what happened to the victims and the pain involved. Of course our hearts go out to them. But taking the killer's life is not going to solve anything," said Catherine.

Some at the protest said they are against the death penalty because with the death penalty there's no turning back.  They say there have been many cases of convicted criminals later found innocent due to  mistaken identity or false reports and they would never want to see an innocent person put to death.

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