PUBLIC OPINION > The Aurora Shooter Should Get the Death Penalty

News 2012/07/31 21:00:00
The nation is still struggling to process the tragic events of July 20, when 12 people were shot dead in a Colorado theater during a midnight showing of "The Dark Knight Rises." The suspected gunman, James Eagan Holmes, was charged with 24 counts of first-degree murder. That's two for each victim: one standard charge, and one with "extreme indifference to the value of human life generally." We asked the public if the shooter should get the death penalty.

Looking back at Colorado's recent history with capital punishment, we find that only one person has been executed since 1977 -- Gary Lee Davis, for the rape and murder of one woman. There are also three people on death row in Colorado -- Nathan Dunlap, who murdered four people; Mario Owns, who murdered two people; and Robert Ray, who ordered the murder of two people. Given the company, it doesn't sound like it will be that difficult to get the shooter on death row. The public will be happy to hear it.

Proximity Poll

Before we get into the demographics proper, we wanted to compare the results of this poll to one we took in April. At that time, we asked if the death penalty was necessary. About 62% of the public felt it was. However, this time, relating the issue to a horrendous case that's still fresh in our minds, overall support for the death penalty was 14% higher.

Liberals Let Go

Age and politics seemed to have the most significant correlation with how people responded, but the political breakdown was more interesting when compared to the April poll. While conservative opinion remained about the same, liberals almost doubled their support from 33% to 59%. However, that could have something to do with the wording -- "Is the death penalty necessary?" versus "Should he get it?"

Teens Are Torn

Teens were the only major demographic that was still undecided. Only 51% of them think the shooter should get the death penalty. There were several arguments against it -- death is too painless, we shouldn't stoop to his level, some even pitched conspiracy theories and government cover-ups. The most popular response to any of those arguments was the cost of a life sentence.

If you'd like to vote on this question, dig deeper into the demographics, or engage in existing discussion about the topic, visit our poll about the death penalty. We'd love to hear from you!
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Top Opinion

  • Anonymouse ~superdoge~ 2012/07/31 23:32:37
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    Don't like the death penalty. Why not let them give back to society? Hard labour, mining, medical testing, there are lots of things we could put scum to work on. Why not use them instead of defenceless animals in early-stage pharmaceutical testing?

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  • Whatever 2012/07/31 22:30:35
    Yes. In fact, if he pleads insanity, why not simply pull the trigger or put on noose on him right then and there? Seriously, if he's insane, that means he doesn't know right from wrong, doesn't understand consequences, etc. So therefore, when his lawyers say he's insane, the judge should pull out a gun or a noose and ask him, "so you don't understand what this will do if I point it at you, like this (with the laser dot on his forehead) and pull the trigger? That will point him on the spot!
  • lee 2012/07/31 22:30:30
    we ARE a bloodthirsty lot, aren't we?

    oh, wait, this is SH... of course ppl HERE think that...

    ignorance abounds here.
  • Null_Shock lee 2012/07/31 23:28:35
    The guy can't be allowed in society, it cost money to keep him in prison, it cost less money to kill him, but then that raises other issues about capital punishment. This isn't all that simple. People want to sound politically correct and speak out against it and others want to sound righteous by condemning him to death. He is a delusional psychopath who killed 12 people . Is the death penalty justice or a outdated savage punishment? Is letting him rot in prison justice, or a waste of tax money as he won't likely ever feel guilt fir what he has done. I won't lie and day I know the answer. I know one thing though, he can't be allowed to walk free. I also have no problem with capital punishment if it fits the crime....I personally think 12 murders is a pretty good reason to sentence the murderer to the same fate as his victims. Does that make me bloodthirsty or ignorant....*shrugs*
  • lee Null_Shock 2012/07/31 23:59:55
    actually, it does cost more money to have the death penalty that it does to have life w/o parole.... studies have shown that. maybe not in this case with a young shooter and a pretty open/shut case, but still.... as a rule.

    so you are ignorant of that fact.

    but as for bloodthirsty... killing someone in will not bring back the dead or do anything to make the victims or their families heal from this... only time will do that.

    at least we can agree he should never be allowed back into society... ever.
  • Null_Shock lee 2012/08/01 01:41:57
    I don't believe that it would bring back the victims...but I do see your point and I am ignorant in that area as I have read no studies , I just figured food and medical care would cost less than capital punishment . I just wonder why he gets to live while his victims did not, and how I would feel if it happened to someone I love.
  • lee Null_Shock 2012/08/01 16:41:02
    understood... and we all feel for the families.
  • darwolf lee 2012/08/01 04:05:07
    That's why they should use the firing squad. You can get bullets cheap.
    If he gets life. His victims family members get to pay for his food,room, and medical with their taxes. How is that being fair.
  • lee darwolf 2012/08/01 16:43:57
    its not about how cheap the mechanics of killing... you can suffocate someone for no cost at all.

    its about the due process of law and all the appeals and reviews that have been put in place to try and make sure that the death penatly is applied fairly and justly...

    if you just want to kill him you will have to start your own country... that's not how we do it here.
  • wutever 2012/07/31 22:25:13
    Brake his legs and throw him in a pit pf hogs
  • Sagan 2012/07/31 22:22:57
    It's only when people see the pain, the loss, and the anger, when we want the person who caused it to die. I don't see anyone saying "HE HAS RIGHTS, NO HUMAN DESERVES TO DIE!".
  • Courtney Hammett 2012/07/31 22:21:53
    Courtney Hammett
    Killing is wrong. Deterrence is proven to be a false concept, as states with the death penalty have more murders. It costs more to execute them. Many have been proven innocent just before death. I hate the death penalty, and if anyone kills my family, I want them to rot in jail.
  • Marie55 Courtne... 2012/07/31 22:39:53
    You sound just like my mother. I love your thinking.
  • KelciLynDiNatale 2012/07/31 22:18:54
    People like him should get what they serve. So in his case the death penalty might not be enough. Just my opinion of course though.
  • Sig Sauer P220 2012/07/31 22:15:02
    Sig Sauer P220
    Pull the trigger ...
  • Timche 2012/07/31 22:14:49
  • Guru Casper BN-ZERO 2012/07/31 22:11:52
    Guru Casper BN-ZERO
    if anyone deserves death,he does
    I won't WHINE if he gets life without parole
  • strawberry 2012/07/31 22:08:59
    Here is a guy with no violent history at all. I cannot believe he was sane at the time he committed these murders. Just look at his photo with the red hair; does this look like a sane person.?
  • vet4freedom 2012/07/31 22:08:05
    NO ... thats to easy . put in a cell with some 500 pound dude named Bubba . who hasnt had a woman in 20 years .
  • Just Jenn for Now 2012/07/31 22:05:21
    Just Jenn for Now
    Personally I'd like him castrated then left to rot in jail. Or perhaps save money on the lethal injection and just hang the bastard, in public. I can't believe anyone thinks he should be entitled to walk, let alone LIVE after what he's done.
  • ValorNET 2012/07/31 22:04:08 (edited)

    james holmes


    james holmes httpwww i-am-bored combor

    Learn more. Click here.
  • Null_Shock ValorNET 2012/07/31 23:33:21
    Yes it is hair dye and different facial expressions and two images does not mean it is two different people.
  • Anonymo... Null_Shock 2012/07/31 23:40:02 (edited)
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    -_- His nose is a different shape, his eyes are different colours, his eyebrows and Adam's Apples are different. The natural hair colours are different. The one on the right has curly hair and is cross eyed. They're clearly different people.
  • Null_Shock Anonymo... 2012/08/01 01:53:00 (edited)
    My nose changes when I make those same facial expressions. I havehave pictures ithat were taken in different lighting that makes my eyes to appear to be different colors. This isn't some conspiracy....though the people who believe so do provide some moderate amusement.
  • Anonymo... Null_Shock 2012/08/01 15:35:28
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    Appear to be different colours. The guy on the left has pitch black eyes, the guy on the right has pale blue eyes.
  • ☠ Live ... Null_Shock 2012/07/31 23:53:42
    ☠ Live Free Or Die ☠
    The entire construct of his face is different.
  • Anonymo... ValorNET 2012/07/31 23:37:17
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    Interesting. So what are you saying?
  • ValorNET Anonymo... 2012/08/01 00:18:24
  • Anonymo... ValorNET 2012/08/01 01:26:25
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    But in this case what are you saying? Who was the killer, was it the guy on the left or right? How did he get explosives knowledge?
  • Null_Shock Anonymo... 2012/08/01 01:57:21
    Explosives knowledge is exceedingly easy to obtain on the internet.
  • Anonymo... Null_Shock 2012/08/01 15:37:11
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    Yes it is. But to become a master at it takes years.
  • ValorNET Null_Shock 2012/08/02 01:09:37
    It wouldn't take the internet, just some CIA training. All you'd have to do is live in Afgahnistan for awhile and get educated free there.
  • ValorNET Anonymo... 2012/08/02 01:12:34
    I don't talk to anybody claiming to be 'affiliated' or 'anonymous'. That in itself is a government 'blue harring'; A false-flag, subversion attack on internet 'freedom'. You could either be a plant, immitator, aggitator, or simply a 'ditto-head', copycat. Either way, you're a fool for taking up that moniker.
  • Anonymo... ValorNET 2012/08/02 01:14:00
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    Lol, I would never work for the government, I consider it to be a necessary evil at best... You sound like a conspiracy theorist...
  • ValorNET Anonymo... 2012/08/02 01:23:23
    You say it as though there's something wrong with caring about what YOU allow other people to DO to alter how you're "allowed" to live your life.
  • Anonymo... ValorNET 2012/08/02 08:05:37 (edited)
    Anonymouse ~superdoge~
    To put it frankly, I'm laughing at your paranoia.
  • ValorNET Anonymo... 2012/09/13 22:48:34
    I'll just keep laughing at you being a living, breathing, cliche.
  • Inquisi... ValorNET 2012/08/01 05:44:04
  • ValorNET Inquisi... 2012/09/14 00:27:57
    Not sure if you support, refute or just want me to have some kool-aid.

    But, I can assure you, I don't want anything to do with kool-aid right now.
    Not after reading what toxic ingredients they're using.

  • kerrykregar.mcquillan 2012/07/31 22:04:08
    I feel he is a prime example of why the death penalty should be invoked, but I am not sure if CO is a death penalty state? Yes, I believe, if convicted, he most certainly should be right in line.
  • eagle8 2012/07/31 22:01:11
    not sure the death penalty is good enough for this guy

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