Alabama has a long and tangled history with the death penalty. A Tuskegee University archive preserves the grim evidence of the “lynch law” that long terrorized African Americans. The state’s historic enthusiasm for legal executions, which remains strong, bears the stain of racism as well. One measure of the problem is the frequency of national court rulings that address Alabama’s capital punishment machinery.
This fact sheet examines the history of capital punishment in Alabama against the backdrop of national legal trends and the growing call for a moratorium.