Liberty Forum 2014 has ended
Liberty Forum is an annual conference celebrating Liberty, the Free State Project and New Hampshire.
Back To Schedule
Thursday, February 20 • 4:00pm - 6:00pm
Does new Hampshire need the threat of death? A discussion for and against capital punishment.

Sign up or log in to save this to your schedule, view media, leave feedback and see who's attending!

HB1170, a bill to repeal the crime of capital murder in New Hampshire will be one of the most controversial issues the legislature takes up this year. Support and opposition to this bill seems to fall outside traditional party lines and libertarians in the state house are far from unanimous on this issue. In 2000 the republican house and senate voted to repeal the death penalty but the democratic governor vetoed it. More recently in 2011 a republican legislature and democratic governor passed a bill expanding the use of the death penalty to include burglary. 

New Hampshire has executed 24 people since 1738 a time when a capital crime under the laws of the Province of New Hampshire included rape, homosexual acts, abortion, and bestiality. Today capital crimes are limited to knowingly causing the death of another in seven circumstances, including the death of law enforcement officers and judges. Convicted of the 2006 murder of police officer Michael Briggs in Manchester, Michael Addison has been sentenced to death. Addison is the only inmate on death row in New Hampshire which hasn’t executed anyone since 1939, dismantled it’s gallows in 1992 and has no execution chamber.

Each panelist will have an opportunity to respond to opposing viewpoints presented by the moderator and each other. The panelists have a range of opinions on the issue and each come from a different background. Renny Cushing is the prime sponsor of HB1170 and is leading the current repeal effort in the state house. Renny’s father was murdered in 1988 and his tragic experience has informed his views on the relavancy of the penalty. Richard O’Leary’s law enforcement background as Deputy Chief of the Manchester Police Department could provide insight into case of Michael Addison. Devon Chaffee of the NHCLU can offer perspective on law regarding capital punishment and how it use varies among the states. Libertarian legislators Mark Warden, Joel Winters, and Keith Murphy make up the rest of the panel each with a different stance on the death penalty.

avatar for Tim O'Flaherty

Tim O'Flaherty

A libertarian activist since the 1996 presidential campaign of Harry Browne. Tim moved to New Hampshire from Pennsylvania in 2009 to find a community that shared his preeminent values of justice and liberty. In 2012 he was elected in Manchester to the House of Representatives... Read More →

avatar for Renny Cushing

Renny Cushing

Executive Director, Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights
Renny Cushing is Executive Director of Murder Victims’ Families for Human Rights and a NH State Representative from Hampton. Renny, whose father, Robert Cushing, was murdered in 1988, is a lifelong social justice activist and a pioneer in the effort to bridge the death penalty... Read More →

Keith Murphy

Raised in Baltimore, Maryland, Keith Murphy earned his bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Baltimore and a master's in urban planning from the University of Maryland. Seeking to start a business, he was attracted to New Hampshire by its comparatively... Read More →

Richard O'Leary

1973-2006 33 years with the Manchester NH Police Dept Started at a meter maid and retired as Deputy Chief of Investigative Division 2006-07 Westbridge Inc--Mentor for individuals with mental health and substance abuse issues. 2008-2011 Assistant Director of the Hillsborough County... Read More →
avatar for Mark Warden

Mark Warden

Agent Provocateur, Porcupine Real Estate
Mark Warden moved to NH from Las Vegas in 2007. He has been a real estate agent and investor for more than 15 years, and started Porcupine Real Estate in 2009. On the political side, Mark was elected as a state representative in 2010 and 2012, serving on the Criminal Justice & Public... Read More →
avatar for Joel Winters

Joel Winters

Joel F. Winters is a Democratic member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, representing Hillsborough 18. He was first elected to the chamber in 2012. Winters served in the House previously, representing Hillsborough 17 from 2006 to 2010

Thursday February 20, 2014 4:00pm - 6:00pm EST

Attendees (0)