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Oregon votes to narrow use of death penalty

SALEM (AP) — Oregon will substantially narrow the use of the death penalty by limiting qualifying crimes.

The Senate overwhelmingly voted Saturday to restrict capital punishment to apply to terrorist acts that kill two or more people. Killing police officers and kids younger than 14 also applies. Lawmakers cannot introduce an outright ban on capital punishment without sending the measure to the ballot box.

Voters approved adding the death penalty to the Oregon Constitution in 1984.

The measure now heads to the Gov. Kate Brown who extended a 2011 moratorium on using the death penalty.

The state Department of Corrections says there were 30 people on death row as of Jan. 1, 2019. The last execution was in 1997.