Washington State Capital Punishment Laws
Washington State allows capital punishment as a sentence for the most serious homicides (and treason). However, the governor recently halted all executions after a state-wide study was conducted. If and when capital punishment will resume is unclear at this time.
What Methods Of Execution Are Available In Washington?
There are two (2) methods of execution that are legal in Washington: lethal injection and hanging. Lethal injection is used unless a convicted offender chooses hanging as the preferred execution method.
Is There A Minimum Age of For Capital Punishment?
There is no minimum age for executions in Washington.
The main details of Washington's capital punishment laws are highlighted in the following table, with links to additional resources. See FindLaw's Death Penalty section to learn more.
|Code Section||10.95.010, et seq.; 10.95.180; 9.82.01|
|Is Capital Punishment Allowed?||Yes|
|Effect of Defendant's Incapacity||Mitigating factor; exempt from execution of mentally retarded|
|Minimum Age||No minimum age|
|Available for Crimes Other than Homicide?||Treason|
|Definition of Capital Homicide||Law enforcement officer, corrections officer or firefighter in performance of official duties; offender escaped from confinement; offender in custody as consequence of felony conviction; agreement for money or value; contracted; obtain, maintain or advance position in organization; during course of or as a result of shooting from or near a motor vehicle used as a transport; victim was member or former member of criminal justice system (judge, attorney, juror, parole officer, etc.) related to their official duties; committed to conceal crime or identity of person committing crime; multiple victims; in connection with robbery, rape, burglary, kidnapping, arson; victim was news reporter and committed to obstruct investigation, research or reporting activities; victim had court order against defendant; victim and defendant were of same household and within 5 years harassment or criminal assault had occurred 3 or more times|
|Method of Execution||Lethal injection or hanging at election of defendant|
Note: State laws are constantly changing -- contact a Washington criminal defense attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.
Research the Law
Washington Capital Punishment Laws: Related Resources
Contact a qualified attorney.