WFSU News · Tallahassee · Panama City · Thomasville
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
State News

Justice James Perry Speaks Out Against Death Penalty

Outgoing Justice James Perry is voicing opposition to the death penalty.
Nick Evans

Florida’s Supreme Court has wrestled with capital punishment all year.  On his way out the door, Justice James Perry is voicing his opposition to the death penalty.

Justice James Perry will step down at the end of this year.  He’s reached the state-mandated retirement age for Supreme Court justices.  In what will probably be his final opinion from the bench Perry makes a nod to former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun, writing he’ll be following others who determined to no longer “tinker with the machinery of death.” 

Perry says he doesn’t believe there’s a way for the state to constitutionally impose capital punishment, and argues the court’s decision to only give new hearings to death penalty cases settled after 2002 has no judicial precedent.  He’ll be replaced by conservative jurist C. Alan Lawson.