Here's a look at what you need to know about the death penalty in the United States.
Facts: Capital punishment is legal in 32 U.S. states.
Approximately 3,108 inmates in 35 states are awaiting execution.
Connecticut, Maryland and New Mexico have abolished the death penalty, but it is not retroactive. Prisoners on death row in those states will still be executed.
Since 1976, when the death penalty was reinstated by the U.S. Supreme Court, 1,352 people have been executed. (as of October 2013)
Japan is the only industrial democracy besides the United States that has the death penalty.
Federal Government: The U.S. government and U.S. military have approximately 63 people awaiting execution. (as of October 2013)
The U.S. government has executed three people since 1976. (as of October 2013)
Females: There are 61 women on death row in the United States. (as of October 2013)
Thirteen women have been executed since the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976. (as of October 2013)
Juveniles: March 1, 2005 - Roper v. Simmons. The Supreme Court rules that the execution of juveniles is unconstitutional. This means that 16 and 17-year-olds are ineligible for execution.
Twenty-two juveniles between the ages of 16 and 17 were executed between 1976 and 2005.
Clemency: Clemency Processes around the Country
273 clemencies have been granted in the United States since 1976.
For federal death row inmates, the president alone has the power to grant a pardon.
Timeline: 1834 - Pennsylvania becomes the first state to move executions into correctional facilities, ending public executions.
1838 - Discretionary death penalty statutes are enacted in Tennessee.
1846 - Michigan becomes the first state to abolish the death penalty for all crimes except treason.
1890 - William Kemmler becomes the first person executed by electrocution.
1907-1917 - Nine states abolish the death penalty for all crimes or strictly limit it. By 1920, five of those states had reinstated it.
1924 - The use of cyanide gas is introduced as an execution method.
1930s - Executions reach the highest levels in American history, averaging 167 per year.
June 29, 1972 - Furman v. Georgia. The Supreme Court effectively voids 40 death penalty statutes and suspends the death penalty.
1976 - Gregg v. Georgia. The death penalty is reinstated.
January 17, 1977 - A ten-year moratorium on executions ends with the execution of Gary Gilmore by firing squad in Utah.
1977 - Oklahoma becomes the first state to adopt lethal injection as a means of execution.
December 7, 1982 - Charles Brooks becomes the first person executed by lethal injection.
1984 - Velma Barfield of North Carolina becomes the first woman executed since reinstatement of the death penalty.
1986 - Ford v. Wainwright. Execution of insane persons is banned.
1987 - McCleskey v. Kemp. Racial disparities are not recognized as a constitutional violation of "equal protection of the law" unless intentional racial discrimination against the defendant can be shown.
1988 - Thompson v. Oklahoma. Executions of offenders age 15 and younger at the time of their crimes are declared unconstitutional.
1989 - Stanford v. Kentucky, and Wilkins v. Missouri. The Eighth Amendment does not prohibit the death penalty for crimes committed at age sixteen or seventeen.
1994 - President Bill Clinton signs the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act that expands the federal death penalty.
1996 - Execution by firing squad is used for the last time in Utah. The last hanging takes place in Delaware.
January 31, 2000 - A moratorium on executions is declared by Illinois Governor George Ryan. Since 1976, Illinois is the first state to block executions.
2002 - Atkins v. Virginia. The Supreme Court rules that the execution of mentally retarded defendants violates the Eighth Amendment's ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
January 2003 - Before leaving office, Governor George Ryan grants clemency to all of the remaining 167 inmates on Illinois's death row, due to the flawed process that led to the death sentences.
June 2004 - New York's death penalty law is declared unconstitutional by the state's high court.
March 1, 2005 - Roper v. Simmons. The Supreme Court rules that the execution of juvenile killers is unconstitutional. The 5-4 decision tosses out the death sentence of a Missouri man who was 17-years-old when he murdered a St. Louis area woman in 1993.
December 2, 2005 - The execution of Kenneth Lee Boyd in North Carolina marks the 1,000th time the death penalty has been carried out since it was reinstated by the Supreme Court in 1976. Boyd, 57, is executed for the 1988 murders of his wife, Julie Curry Boyd, and father-in-law, Thomas Dillard Curry.