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Legal Topics: Captial Punishment in Minnesota

The last execution in Minnesota was in the case of State v. Williams, 96 Minn. 351, 105 N.W. 265 (1905). The opinion of the Minnesota Supreme Court and the briefs of the attorneys before the court are available in the Law Library. The death penalty was abolished by the legislature in 1911 (Chapter 387, Laws of Minnesota).

Articles and Resources: (Print resources are available at the Law Library and in county law libraries around the state.)

  • Bessler, J. D. The "midnight assassination law" and Minnesota's Anti-Death Penalty Movement, 1849-1911. 22 William Mitchell Law Review 577 (1996).
  • History Topics: Capital Punishment from the Minnesota State Historical Society. See also Collections Up Close: Fragment of the Execution Rope of William Williams.
  • Tanick, Marshall. Looking Back: A Century Without Executions, 68 Bench & Bar of Minnesota 18-19 (March 2011).

  • DISCLAIMER:  As librarians and not lawyers, we can suggest resources but cannot give legal advice (such as which form to file), or legal opinions, (such as how a statute might apply to particular facts.)  To do so could be considered the unauthorized practice of law.  Even though we try to suggest materials that will be of help, further research is usually required to find a complete and correct answer.  For many questions, the best answer may be to consult an attorney.  For links to resources on finding an attorney click here.


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    Minnesota State Law Library: Legal Topics: Captial Punishment in Minnesota

    Last updated on July 3, 2012.
    Links checked on August 12, 2013.

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