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Publication Capital Punishment, 2005

Tracy L. Snell, Bureau of Justice Statistics

December 10, 2006    NCJ 215083

Presents characteristics of persons under sentence of death on December 31, 2005 and of persons executed in 2005. Preliminary data on executions by States during 2006 are included. The report also summarizes the movement of prisoners into and out of death sentence status during 2005. It presents data on offenders' sex, race, Hispanic origin, education, marital status, age at time of arrest for the capital offense, legal status at time of the offense, methods of execution, trends, and time between imposition of death sentence and execution.


  • At yearend 2005, 36 States and the Federal prison system held 3,254 prisoners under sentence of death, 66 fewer than at yearend 2004. This represents the fifth consecutive year that the population has decreased.
  • Of those under sentence of death, 56% were white, 42% were black, and 2% were of other races.
  • Fifty-two women were under sentence of death in 2005, up from 47 in 1995.

Part of the Capital Punishment Series

Press Release
Full report (PDF 389K)
ASCII file (32K)
Spreadsheet (Zip format 23K)
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Capital Punishment (NPS-8)

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