Death penalty bill to be debated - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE;

Death penalty bill to be debated

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Posted By:  KLKN Newsroom

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) _ Nebraska lawmakers will get a chance this year to debate a death-penalty repeal measure.

The Legislature's Judiciary Committee voted 7-0 on Tuesday to advance the bill for full debate. The bill was introduced by Sen. Ernie Chambers of Omaha, an outspoken opponent of capital punishment.

Nebraska has 11 inmates on death row, but the punishment has faced numerous legal challenges in recent years.  The last prisoner executed in Nebraska was Robert E. Williams, who died in the electric chair in 1997 after confessing to three murders. Nebraska has executed three inmates out of 1,600 homicide cases in the last four decades.

Chambers has chosen the measure as his priority bill, which increases the odds that will get debated.

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