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Blagojevich to Sign Final Death Penalty Reform

By AP/KWMU

Springfield, Ill. – Governor Rod Blagojevich is set to sign the last piece of the state's death penalty reform package into law. Spokeswoman Abby Ottenhoff says that signing will come Tuesday.

The last remaining provision concerns police officers who are accused of perjury.

The governor previously vetoed it amid concerns that police would not be assured of due process. He then reached a compromise with legislators that was approved in mid-November.

The other changes to Illinois' death penalty system took effect immediately upon passage by the House and Senate in November, overhauling a system that has led to the wrongful conviction of 17 men.

They were set in motion when then-Governor George Ryan declared a moratorium on executions after it was discovered that 13 wrongfully convicted men had been sent to death row.

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