Senator Jim Nielsen (R-Tehama) who served on the California Board of Prison Terms, the largest parole authority in the nation, from 1990 to 2007, issued the following statement:
“Victims who survive the horrific murder of child or a parent or a spouse suffer a pain that never completely goes away. When the murderer is convicted and sentenced to death, family members experience a basic sense of justice.
“Governor Newsom callously disregards the anguish of these families and rips from them any sense of justice, victimizing them all over again.
“The Governor’s action today brings back the pain and agony they have been forced to endure.
“This executive order is an affront to our system of justice.
“A jury convicted these violent criminals. In some trials, 12 people spent weeks, sometimes months, of their lives reviewing witness testimony, physical and DNA evidence, and before determining beyond a reasonable doubt that these murderers committed the most heinous acts against other human beings.
“California voters have spoken loudly and clearly, as recently as 2016, that the death penalty serves as a legal and appropriate punishment for those who commit vicious, evil crimes. Special circumstances are always of the most vicious and cruel acts one human can inflict upon another.
“The Governor has the authority to delay the implementation of the law but his action is eroding faith of California voters in our democracy and our system of justice.”
The Original Night Stalker, also known as the East Area Rapist, is awaiting trial for the torture, rape and murder of an estimated 63 people. These calculated crimes were so heinous that he could face the death sentence, if convicted by a jury of his peers. If convicted during Governor Newsom’s term, justice would not be served for these victims and their families.
Below is a link to the Los Angeles Times’ list of “the 13 men executed by California since 1978.” Today, there are 737 just like them on death row.