(The Center Square) – Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak announced Thursday that there was “no way forward” for lawmakers’ latest attempt to get rid of the death penalty in the state.
Assembly Bill 395 would have reduced the sentence for a person convicted of first degree murder in Nevada to life in prison without the possibility of parole. It was sponsored by the Assembly Committee on the Judiciary.
“I have been clear on my position that the death penalty should be requested and used less often, but I believe that there are serious situations that justify it,” Sisolak said in a statement. “I understand some will be disappointed with this outcome, but the process of determining crimes serious enough to warrant this punishment deserves careful consideration.”
Abolition groups have been trying to overturn the state’s death penalty statute for more than 20 years. The Nevada Coalition Against the Death Penalty described AB 395 as the most successful attempt to defeat the law during this period.
The Assembly voted 26-16 along party lines to approve the bill on April 13, but faced strong opposition in the Senate.
Senate Judiciary President Melanie Scheible D-Las Vegas, who also works as a prosecutor, has never scheduled a hearing for the bill. Senate Democratic Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro, D-Las Vegas, who is a Clark County district attorney, also did not support the bill.
The state’s largest prosecutors lobby group, the Nevada District Attorneys Association, has also urged lawmakers not to support the bill.
As the move marks the end of legislation in effect during the 2021 legislative session, lawmakers have left open the possibility of the bill returning at another time.
“Over the past few weeks we have had a series of discussions regarding a viable path forward for AB 395, and I appreciate the willingness of the promoter of the bill to work on potential amendments to restrict the enforcement of the sentence. death while balancing concerns about complete abolition. “Said Cannizzaro FOX5 in a report. “Unfortunately, we have yet to find consensus on the bill, and it is unlikely that we would do so in the remaining weeks of the session.”