There are quite a number of people who have been executed in the UK for crimes they never committed.
There are a goodly number of those who would almost certainly have been executed but were found to have had evidence fabricated against them by police forces who were under huge pressure to catch ‘someone’.
Some were innocent, some were not guilty of what you would call first degree murder but were guilty of what we call manslaughter(2nd dergree murder?).Some were incompetant to plead, on some who were freed evidence proving innocence was witheld by police, interviews were conducted in ways that were simply illegal in other cases, others were proven innocent by advances in forensic technology.
It is fairly easy to cite cases like say serial killers with a mass of evidence who should be executed but for every one of these there’s a large number of other cases that are not so clear cut.
In the US the problem seems to be, where do you define the boundaries? Most of the rest of the developed world does not deem itself as being perfect enough to be able to do so.
Every system has flaws, always will, but how do you feel about killing innocent persons in the haste for revenge ?
Sometimes the issue of cost is brought up, why should we pay for such non-contributors? IMO this is a smokescreen. we can find the money for our governments to do odious things in our name(real-politic), we find money to support the lazy and greedy, the weak, the helpless and the undeserving and yet the risk of killing an innocent to balance the books is acceptable ? Really!
I doubt that Geoffrey Dahmer or others ever seriously thought about execution to hold back and it certainly never stopped him.The real deterrance for criminals is the liklehood of being caught.
In the UK there has been a program of remote camera installation in city centres and it is not surprising that crime of all types has fallen in those places.
We have the option of being able to see the phone number of a caller, the number of harassment calls has fallen dramatically.
One credit card company etches a photograph of the holder onto their cards, they are hardly ever stolen or used in fraud.(Royal Bank of Scotland)
In short deterrance is not about execution it’s about catching the perps.
There seems to be an idea that if the punishment for an offence is great enough then the criminal will stay honest, like a kind of risk/punishment cost benefit analysis criminals simply do not think that way, let me tell you that the overwhleming majority of repeat offenders genuinely do not expect to get caught.
There might be plenty of evidence to the contrary but each time they spin the wheel by reoffending they think the ball will never land in a ‘go to jail slot’
To reduce crime you have to change the perception of the offender from thinking there is little risk of detection to one of high risk.