Once this year's legislative session is over, the head of a key house committee plans to take another look at Georgia's death penalty law when it comes to proving mental illness.
Georgia is the only state that requires defendants in death penalty cases to prove mental illness beyond a reasonable doubt.
Advocates this week called for the law to be changed to “by a preponderance of the evidence” in light of the controversy surrounding death row inmate Warren Lee Hill, who has an IQ of 70.
Rep. Rich Golick (R-Smyrna) tells WSB’s Sandra Parrish he plans to study the law during the off session to see if a change is warranted.
“It may result in a change, it may not,” he says. “But I think when you’re alone in a particular approach on a very serious issue, and there’s no more serious an issue than the death penalty, a serious study of that issue is warranted.”
Golick, who is chair of the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee, says the members will review the law as it does others when the Legislature is not in session.