Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Illinois Abolishes Death Penalty = Chris Coleman Staying Earthbound For Now

Posted By on Thu, Mar 10, 2011 at 8:04 AM

New law could spare Chris Coleman's life.
  • New law could spare Chris Coleman's life.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn yesterday signed a bill permanently abolishing the death penalty in his state and commuting the sentences of all thirteen people currently on death row. They now face life in prison without the possibility of parole.

The new Illinois law likely means that Chris Coleman, the man charged with strangling his wife and two sons to death in 2009, will spend his life in prison should he be convicted of murder following his trial next month.

One of Coleman's attorneys tells the Belleville News-Democrat that abolishing the death penalty was both "historic" and "appropriate." Meanwhile, prosecutors in that case plan to continue to seek the death penalty in hopes that state voters might overturn the new law.

Executions in Illinois had been on hold since 2000 when then-governor George Ryan placed a moratorium on capital punishment after finding that several of the state's death row inmates were innocent or had been convicted improperly. In 2003, Ryan commuted the death sentences of all 167 convicts then on death row.

Missouri, by comparison, has 48 men currently on death row and last executed a prisoner on February 9. No similar such legislation to abolish the death penalty is under consideration in Missouri.

Tags: ,

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 20, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2021 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation