Marginal Deterrence and Multiple Murders
AbstractThis paper examines empirically the state-level impact of capital punishment on multiple murder rates for the period 1995–1999. In baseline tests—tests employing mixed panel data and using an estimation technique combining aspects of both fixed- and random-effects models—we show that executions reduce the single murder rate and that the use of electrocution reduces the murder rate beyond that resulting from lethal injection. These results are not unique. The unique finding of our analysis is that multiple murders are not deterred by execution in any form, quite possibly because the marginal cost of murders after the first is approximately zero. Finally, we offer a brief historical analysis of how the principle of marginal deterrence has been used and suggest how it might be applied in the matter of multiple murders.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Southern Economic Association in its journal Southern Economic Journal.
Volume (Year): 72 (2006)
Issue (Month): 3 (January)
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- K14 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Criminal Law
- K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
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- Gebhard Kirchgässner, 2011.
"Econometric Estimates of Deterrence of the Death Penalty: Facts or Ideology?,"
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(3), pages 448-478, 08.
- Gebhard Kirchgässner, 2011. "Econometric Estimates of Deterrence of the Death Penalty: Facts or Ideology?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3443, CESifo Group Munich.
- Kirchgässner, Gebhard, 2011. "Econometric Estimates of Deterrence of the Death Penalty: Facts or Ideology," Economics Working Paper Series 1115, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
- Yang, Bijou & Lester, David, 2008. "The deterrent effect of executions: A meta-analysis thirty years after Ehrlich," Journal of Criminal Justice, Elsevier, vol. 36(5), pages 453-460, September.
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