Sister Helen Prejean, author of “Dead Man Walking,” commemorated 10 years without any executions in Louisiana — the longest such period in the state’s history — at a “Vigil for Life” ceremony in New Orleans on Jan. 7.
Louisiana has executed 28 individuals since 1976. The 28th was Gerald Bordelon, 47, a Livingston Parish man sentenced to death for the murder of Courtney LeBlanc, his 12-year-old stepdaughter. He was pronounced dead from lethal injection at 6:32 p.m. on Jan. 7, 2010.
Tuesday’s vigil was held outside the headquarters of Resurrection After Exoneration, a nonprofit founded by death-row exoneree John Thompson. The Promise of Justice Initiative, which represents Louisiana death-row prisoners and advocates for death-penalty abolition, was one of the sponsors of the event.
In May, the state Senate rejected a bill that would have allowed voters to decide on whether to abolish the death penalty.