State lawmakers introduce bill to abolish death penalty

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Lawmakers in the House have introduced a measure to abolish the death penalty, an effort that has failed in Washington state in previous years but which supporters hope will gain traction following Gov. Jay Inslee's decision last year to impose a moratorium on capital punishment.

The bipartisan bill, introduced Monday by Democratic Rep. Reuven Carlyle of Seattle, would replace the death penalty with a life sentence with no opportunity for parole. House Bill 1739 would also require those convicted to pay restitution to victims and their families.

The death penalty is currently authorized by the federal government and 32 states, including Washington and Oregon. However, the governors in both Oregon and Washington have said no one would be executed during their time in office. Eighteen states have abolished the death penalty, with Maryland being the most recent.