Last updated on: 1/19/2009 | Author: ProCon.org

Nicholas J. Compton, JD Biography

Title:
Assistant Federal Public Defender at the Martinsburg Federal Public Defender Office for the Northern District of West Virginia
Position:
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Should the Death Penalty Be Allowed?"
Reasoning:

“[f]or those individuals who wish to have a public execution, courts should not stand in their way. The public has a right to know the true nature of a procedure it sanctions. Moreover, public executions serve as a check on the prison officials conducting the execution. If the public is going to sanction an execution, it should be assured that the execution is being carried out in as humane a manner as possible given the situation. If the procedure is gruesome, so be it. If execution horror stories are shown on television, then so be it. The public has a right to know what it is authorizing. Some people may find the procedure barbaric and may be moved to protest further executions. Some people may see the execution as a just and rightful end to a barbaric human being. Either way, if the condemned individual wishes to have his message broadcast, if the news media wishes to facilitate that broadcast, and if citizens choose to watch that broadcast, then they should be able to exercise that choice free from any unreasonable restrictions placed on them by the state.”

“Public Executions in America, Should Death Row Inmates Be Able to Choose Between Private and Public Death,” Richmond Journal of Law and the Public Interest, Feb. 16, 2001

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Assistant Federal Public Defender, Martinsburg Federal Public Defender Office, Northern District of West Virginia, 2009-
  • Captain, Judge Advocate General (JAG) Corps, US Army, 2003-2008
Education:
  • JD, Richmond College of Law, 2003
  • BA, William and Mary College, 1999
Other:
  • None found
Quoted in:
  1. Should Executions Be Made Public?