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Cut crime and save money

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Do you want to save state taxpayers billions of dollars, eliminate an inefficient and wasteful program, help crime victims and help law enforcement to catch more killers and rapists in California? The current clearance rate for solving murders and rapes in California ranges between 46- and 56 percent. If you answer yes, you will want to sign the petition to put an initiative on the ballot that will change all death penalties to permanent imprisonment. It will also require convicted murderers to work and pay restitution to the victims and will allocate $100 million of the dollars saved each year to enhance law enforcement’s ability to catch murderers and rapists. We have executed 13 people since we reinstated the death penalty in 1977. The system has cost $4.4 billion, which averages out to $308 million for each execution. Executions have been stayed since 2006 by litigation over lethal injection and there will not be any more until at least 2013. If executions resume, the men and women we will be killing will have been on death row for more than 30 years. Our death penalty law does not serve crime victims or make us safer. Petitions will be in circulation between now and February. This is an opportunity to help crime victims and prevent more victims, save money and make us all safer. Paul W. Comiskey, Newcastle