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'US death sentences and executions are decreasing'

EXECUTED: Troy Davis

THE NUMBER of death sentences and executions in the U.S. has fallen this year, according to an anti-capital-punishment group report.

Findings from The Death Penalty Information Center study marks the first decrease in executions in over three decades, with less than 100 death sentences being handed down to prisoners.

The charity has reportedly argued that the figures reflect a "growing discomfort" Americans are developing for the death penalty.

Richard Dieter, the director of the information center, told MSNBC: " I think that shook the confidence that some people had about the death penalty, that it really does risk innocent lives — even though many are guilty. There’s still the danger, and so juries are returning less death sentences, prosecutors are seeking it less,” Dieter told"

He added: “Courts are looking at these cases more closely and governors are sometimes granting clemency, all because of the doubts and disfavor of the death penalty as it has been applied in the past 10 years.”

On September 21 death row inmate, Troy Davis, was executed by lethal injection despite a high profile campaign by celebrities and protesters that claimed he was 'innocent'.

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