CHAPTER 309

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 11, DELAWARE CODE, ENTITLED "CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE" RELATIVE TO RECOMMENDATION OF MERCY, INFLICTION OF CAPITAL PUNISHMENT AND EXECUTION DAY FOR CAPITAL PUNISHMENT.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware:

Section 1. Title 11, Delaware code, is amended by enacting a new Section 3901 to read as follows:

§ 3901. Recommendation of mercy

In all cases where the penalty for crimes prescribed by the laws of this State is death, if the jury, at the time of rendering their verdict, recommends the defendant to the mercy of the Court, the Court may, if it seems proper to do so, impose the sentence of life imprisonment instead of death.

Section 2. Title 11, Delaware Code, is amended by enacting a new Section 3909 to read as follows:

§ 3909. Infliction of capital punishment

(a) Punishment of death shall, in all cases, be inflicted by hanging by the neck.

(b) Such punishment shall be inflicted within the prison or workhouse enclosures in the county where the criminal is convicted, except when otherwise ordered, and as privately as the nature of the case will permit, but in the presence of a jury of twelve citizens of the county, to be summoned by the governing board or authority of the prison in which the execution is to occur to witness such execution, and of such other persons as the board or authority deems proper to invite. Not over thirty persons in all shall be present at such execution. In addition to the above number, newspaper representatives having proper credentials from their paper, approved by the President Judge of the Superior Court, Resident Judge, Attorney General or his deputy, shall be admitted.

(c) No persons, other than those specifically named in this Section, shall be permitted to view the executing justice, or to view the result of the executing justice until the person executed has been properly prepared for burial.

(d) Whoever neglects or fails to perform his duties as prescribed in this Section shall be fined $50.

Section 3. Title 11, Delaware Code, is amended by enacting a new Section 3910 to read as follows:

§ 3910. Execution day for capital punishment; suspension

(a) Capital punishment shall be inflicted at such time as the court appoints, but not less than ten days after sentence.

(b) The Governor may suspend the execution until a more distant day to be appointed by him, and from day to day, as he deems his duty to require.

NOTE: This bill became a law on December 18, 1961 without the approval of the Governor and in accordance with Section 18, Article 3 of the Constitution of Delaware.