California Governor Gavin Newsom decreed by executive fiat on Wednesday that there would be a moratorium of indeterminate duration on the execution of convicted murderers sentenced to the death penalty in the Golden State. The executive action spares a cop killer, serial killers, and child killers.
Newsom—the newly elected Democrat—called the death penalty "a failure" that "has discriminated against defendants of color or who may not have had the resources to defend themselves in a justice system that favors those not living in poverty."
Notably, the governor's executive order spares the life of several convicted murderers who meet neither criterion, including a cop killer and two infamous murderers.
Andrew "Andy" Mickel murdered Officer David Mobilio of the Red Bluff Police Department in 2002. He was convicted of the crime in 2005 and sentenced to death row.
Scott Peterson was convicted of killing his pregnant wife on Christmas Eve 2002. This case made national headlines for the total lack of remorse shown by the accused murderer in the killing of his wife and unborn son.
Richard Allen Davis was convicted in 1996 of kidnapping and murdering 12-year-old Polly Klaas. Another case that made national headlines for its sheer ugliness, this case helped gain support for California's "three-strikes law" for repeat offenders.
Despite sparing these murderers their death sentences, Newsom said of his decree, "...this was the right thing to do."
Senator Kamala Harris—once the Attorney General of California and who is now seeking the Democratic presidential nomination in the 2020 election—applauded Newsom's decision.
Harris said in a statement, "As a career law enforcement official, I have opposed the death penalty because it is immoral, discriminatory, ineffective, and a gross misuse of taxpayer dollars."