LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The chief prosecutor for Los Angeles County urged voters on Monday to uphold the death penalty in California on the upcoming November ballot.

Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO that the state — which has had a moratorium on executions since 2006 due to concerns over the previously-used three-drug cocktail — should resume executions after the election.

“We have the mechanism for lethal injection…let’s just do what other states are doing and utilize it,” Cooley said.

Cooley called on voters to reject the Proposition 34 ballot initiative that would replace lethal injection and other forms of capital punishment in California with life prison terms for convicted offenders.

Supporters of the legislation — which include former District Attorney Gil Garcetti — say the bill would save the state $1 billion over five years and direct $100 million in funding to law enforcement agencies for investigations of homicide and rape cases.

But while Cooley opposes the measure, he said he would be in favor of the state using only a one-drug cocktail for lethal injections if Prop. 34 is defeated.

“It works, it’s efficient, the drugs are available, and it meets constitutional standards,” he said.

There are currently 725 prisoners on death rows statewide awaiting the outcome of the Prop. 34 vote.


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