Year of Reenactment
(since 1972 suspension)
Year of First Execution
(since reenactment)

1884-1939: hanging

1940-1989: electrocution

1990-present: lethal injection

Current Method
Lethal injection


Louisiana has life without parole.  A jury decides the sentence.  The Governor has the authority to act on the advice of the Board of Pardons. The Governor needs a favorable  recommendation in order to grant clemency. However, the Governor is not bound by that favorable recommendation. The Governor also has the power to grant reprieves.

As of 2012, there have been nine exonerations. In 2003, John Thompson was exonerated at a retrial that allowed him to present evidence supressed by the state.  Also in 2003, Herbert Welcome was granted clemency following the United States Supreme Court decision in Atkins v. Virginia which banned the execution of the mentally retarded. Dan L. Bright and Ryan Matthews were both exonerated in 2004.

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