• Capital punishment, undoubtedly. If you keep someone in prison for years, you have to pay prison guards, food bills, utility bills. If you kill someone, it's pretty cheap. A bullet/ piece of rope isn't very expensive at all.
  • Some costs associated with capital punishment have nothing to do with money.
  • Life in prison, for someone to get the death sentence they have to go through several appeals, each one costing the state millions of taxpayer dollars. some prisons on the other hand have programs where prisoners work for 25 cents an hour making items like folding chairs and the prison sends the state $5,000/prisoner/year, while still making a profit.
  • Well, the answer to this will depend on 3 things. One, how old is the convicted person and therefore how long would he/she spend incarcerated? Two, does 'life in prison' really mean that in your jurisdiction or does it mean 25 years and maybe parole for good behaviour? And, third and most important of all, how many appeal levels and processes exist in your jurisdiction? I read, many years ago, that the cost of appealing a death sentence can run the taxpayer millions of dollars, because of all the court time, investigations, lawyer's fees (usually at public expense) plus all the prison time before the sentence is implemented. It can take up to 20 years to go through all the levels. At the time cost approximately $50,000 per year to keep someone in maximum security. So if a prisoner was in custody for 20 years and the legal procedures cost approx $1M (on the low side), then it already cost $2M before the death. At that rate, you could keep a prisoner for 40 years, which I doubt is any longer than most 'lifers' stay in prison in those jurisdictions where there is no death penalty.
  • Keeping a person in prison for life costs less than actually putting the person to death. The death penalty comes with automatic appeals, etc that end up costing more than the person living out his/her natural life in prison. Sad, but true.
  • Capital Punishment of course. It costs $40-50,000 to keep someone in prison per year now. If the y serve a life sentence and live only 20 years, we have spent $800-1 million on them.
  • Usually life in prison due to the court costs of appeals and all. Regardless of whether there are court hearings, the accused will be housed, fed, guarded, etcetera for at least a few years. The exception is Texas. Their Death Row has an express checkout lane.
  • capital Punishment because they are not living off the taxes we pay
  • Capital punishment is much cheaper. life in prison is very expensive. you cannot imagine the cost of housing a prisoner for life. the state or federal government must provide the following to inmates: 1. decent housing 2. food 3. medical care 4. library 5. safety within the prison 6. free attorney 7. transportation to medical aid or court And, the list goes on. Capital punishment includes all the above, but for a shorter period of time. A convicted dead man, does not requires any cost effective measures for life.
  • Think about all of the illegal aliens that the Americans are feeding, clothing & babysitting to the tune of $50,000. I can barely pay my rent. Ship them back to where they come from.
  • Capital punishment is definitely the most cost efective in comparision to a life sentence. Not only do convicted criminals require food, housing and a certain degree of safety within a prison, they also namely under go rehabiliatation programmes and other waste of time ideas conjured by the government as a means of reducing the rate of annual capital punishments. Sure, offenders deserve to live out the rest of their lives with the guilt of knowing they'v commited an appaling crime(s) but for the sake of law abiding, tax paying citizens, cant we please exterminate these horrible people so that we are free to live our lives not only with comfort of knowing a dead prisoner can never re offend, but also in the comfort of knowing our hard earned money is not being used to fund the lives of these harmful meaningless people who roam aimlessly in prisons
  • Depends on how much intrinsic value you place on human life -- particularly if you end up executing someone who was wrongly convicted. It's been known to happen, and it's for that reason -- the inherent fallibility of the system -- that I oppose the death penalty.
  • It depends on whether the Life Prisoner is forced to work while in prison and whether the value of that labor equals or exceeds the cost of upkeep for the prisoner (including cell space, portion of guard costs, etc).
  • Financial Facts About the Death Penalty California Report of the California Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice “The additional cost of confining an inmate to death row, as compared to the maximum security prisons where those sentenced to life without possibility of parole ordinarily serve their sentences, is $90,000 per year per inmate. With California’s current death row population of 670, that accounts for $63.3 million annually.” Using conservative rough projections, the Commission estimates the annual costs of the present (death penalty) system to be $137 million per year. The cost of the present system with reforms recommended by the Commission to ensure a fair process would be $232.7 million per year. The cost of a system in which the number of death-eligible crimes was significantly narrowed would be $130 million per year. The cost of a system which imposes a maximum penalty of lifetime incarceration instead of the death penalty would be $11.5 million per year. Commission on the Fair Administration of Justice, June 30, 2008).
  • Cost effective to whom? The total cost of capital punishment today can be higher than life in prison, but much of that cost is born by the accused. Thus, it often costs taxpayers less to kill the prisoner. And on top of that, there are many ways we could improve capital punsihment to make it cheaper. Currently people wait on death row for 8 years or more before being executed because of congestion in the courts. We could easily reduce this to 1-2 years by streamlining capital case appeals.
  • Lock them up and throw away the key and keep the costs down.
  • capital punishment obviously. But you can't exactly restore their life if you exonerate someone with new evidence if you've already executed them.

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