By Bill Rankinfirstname.lastname@example.org
Georgia prosecutors will have more leeway to put killers behind bars until they die under legislation approved Wednesday by the state House of Representatives.
The House voted 164-0 for the bill, which would allow DAs to seek a sentence of life in prison without parole without having to seek the death penalty to get it.
The Senate already approved S.B. 13 by a unanimous vote. The bill now goes to Gov. Sonny Perdue for his signature.
The legislation was the top priority of the state’s district attorneys and also supported by numerous criminal defense attorneys.
DAs say that the legislation would allow them to put more murderers away forever. It also will spare DAs from having to mount costly death-penalty prosecutions when a life-without-parole sentence is what they would have settled for in the first place.
Under Georgia law, once a DA seeks the death penalty, the sentencing options are life in prison with parole, life without parole or the death