Under Oregon law only those convicted of aggravated murder are eligible for the death penalty. HB 3211 would have expanded the scope of the aggravated murder law to include the murder of a reserve officer.

We believe the death penalty is inconsistent with the underlying values of our democratic system; therefore, the ACLU opposed this proposed expansion to our death penalty law. Since 1973, over 139 people have been exonerated and released from death row in 26 states. The majority of these exonerations occurred in the past ten years.

As we testified before the House Judiciary Committee when HB 3211 was heard, it is the wrong time for Oregon to consider a bill expanding the death penalty, when across the country the momentum is building to eliminate the death penalty. HB 3211 did not move forward and died in Committee.