Lawmakers to review tough death penalty provision

Lawmakers to review tough death penalty provision

ATLANTA (AP) - Georgia state lawmakers heard arguments from people on both side of the debate over whether changes should be made to a law that requires death penalty defendants to prove beyond a doubt they are intellectually disabled to be spared execution on those grounds.

A House committee met Thursday to hear input from interested groups. Defense attorneys and advocates for the intellectually disabled argued the standard is too high, while prosecutors expressed concerns about unintended consequences if the law is changed.

A House committee plans to meet Thursday to hear input from interested groups and members of the public.

Georgia has the toughest standard for proving that disability. Other states that impose the death penalty have a lower threshold, while some don't set standards at all.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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