Current Status of the Federal Death Penalty:
On December 2, 2019, the U.S. Justice Department asked the Supreme Court to allow the resumption of the death penalty at the federal level. The request came hours after an appeals court upheld an injunction which temporarily halts the federal executions pending for December 2019 and January 2020.
The situation concerning the planned restart of federal executions is incredibly volatile and requires your continued vigilance. You can raise your voice in opposition to the resumption of federal executions and call on our government leaders to uphold a consistent ethic of life.
Case-Specific Information for Dustin Lee Honken:
The federal government issued a death warrant to execute Dustin Lee Honken by lethal injection Wednesday, January 15, 2020.
Mr. Honken’s death sentence was imposed for murders committed in the state of Iowa, which abolished the death penalty in 1965, and which could have prosecuted Mr. Honken in state court.
Additionally, his trial and sentencing were plagued by misconduct and the ineffectiveness of counsel, who failed to adequately inform Mr. Honken’s jury of his severely dysfunctional background or his resultant mental health problems. He was then denied full and fair review of these defects in federal habeas proceedings.
The Catholic Church teaches that the death penalty is unacceptable in all cases because it is "an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person" and calls us to “work for its abolition worldwide.” (Catholic Catechism 2267)