Jefferson prosecutor to seek fewer death penalties

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Jefferson County prosecutors will be more selective when seeking the death penalty.

The Courier-Journal reports that for more than 15 years prosecutors have had a policy of seeking the death penalty in every murder case that qualified for it, unless there was a compelling reason not to.

Defense attorneys have long complained that the aggressive policy was a waste of time and money.

Public defender Mike Lemke said it has been years since a Jefferson Circuit Court jury has handed down the death sentence.

Newly elected Commonwealth's Attorney Tom Wine told the newspaper the office will begin looking at several factors when deciding whether to seek the death penalty. They include the likelihood of jurors recommending the death sentence in a particular case.

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