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Capital Punishment in the United States, 1973-2002

Resource Type
Dataset : event/transaction data
  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics
Other Title
  • Version 1 (Subtitle)
Collective Title
  • Capital Punishment in the United States Series
Publication Date
Funding Reference
  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics
Free Keywords
capital punishment; commuted sentences; criminal histories; death row inmates; demographic characteristics; executions; felony offenses; prison inmates; sentencing; states (USA)
  • Abstract

    This data collection provides annual data on prisoners under a sentence of death and prisoners whose offense sentences were commuted or vacated during the period 1973-2002. Information is supplied for basic sociodemographic characteristics such as age, sex, education, and state of incarceration. Criminal history data include prior felony convictions for criminal homicide and legal status at the time of the capital offense. Additional information is available for inmates removed from death row by year-end 2002 and for inmates who were executed.
  • Methods

    ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection: Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.; Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes..
  • Table of Contents


    • DS1: Dataset
Temporal Coverage
  • 1973 / 2002
    Time period: 1973--2002
  • Collection date: 2002
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Sampled Universe
All inmates on death row since 1972 in the United States.
Collection Mode
  • The inmate identification numbers were assigned by the Bureau of the Census and have no purpose outside this data collection.

2008-11-04 Minor changes were made to the metadata.2008-10-27 All parts have been moved to restricted access and are available only using the restricted access procedures.2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions. Funding insitution(s): United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics.
One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions; consult the study documentation to learn more on how to obtain the data.
Alternative Identifiers
  • 3958 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Thaxton, Sherod. The Social Geometry of Death: Social Structure and Capital Punishment in Georgia, 1993-2000. Dissertation, Emory University. 2009.
  • Jacobs, David, Qian, Zhenchao, Carmichael, Jason T., Kent, Stephanie L.. Who survives on death row? An individual and contextual analysis. American Sociological Review.72, (4), 610-632.2007.
    • ID: 10.1177/000312240707200406 (DOI)
  • Fagan, Jeffrey. Death and deterrence redux: Science, law, and causal reasoning on capital punishment. Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law.4, (1), 255-320.2006.
  • Fagan, Jeffrey, Zimring, Franklin E., Geller, Amanda. Capital punishment and capital murder: Market share and the deterrent effects of the death penalty. Texas Law Review.84, (7), 1803-1867.2006.
  • Fagan, Jeffrey A., West, Valerie. The decline of the juvenile death penalty: Scientific evidence of evolving norms. Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology.2005.
  • Bonczar, Thomas P., Snell, Tracy L.. Capital Punishment, 2002. Bulletin.NCJ 201848, Washington, DC: United States Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. 2003.
    • ID: (URL)

Update Metadata: 2015-08-05 | Issue Number: 6 | Registration Date: 2015-06-15

United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics (2004): Capital Punishment in the United States, 1973-2002. Version 1. Capital Punishment in the United States Series. Version: v1. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.