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Prosecutor candidate pledges death penalty moratorium

One of the candidates for Charlottesville commonwealth’s attorney would ban death penalty prosecutions in local cases if he’s elected.

Steve Deaton, a former commonwealth’s attorney who hopes to win back the job, tells The Hook he thinks the death penalty is barbaric and says it is “horrendous” to use the possibility of death to induce guilty pleas from murder defendants.

The weekly magazine notes no one has been sentenced to death in Charlottesville since former mayor Sam McCue was hanged in 1905 for the murder of his wife.

Incumbent Commonwealth’s Attorney Dave Chapman is dubious. He said it is not possible for an individual prosecutor to suspend the use of certain laws.

The two candidates will compete in a June 11 Democratic primary. No Republicans have announced, reports The Daily Progress.

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