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Should Hanson get the death penalty?

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A DuPage County jury has convicted Eric Hanson of Naperville of killing four members of his family after he stole about $100,000 from his parents. Should he get the death penalty?

Maybe the question should be, should the governor reinstate executions in Illinois that were suspended by former Gov. George Ryan? Is it time to lift the moratorium that was enacted after it was discovered that several innocent people were put to death?

What are your thoughts on the punishment for Hanson's crimes, and what's your position on the death penalty in Illinois?

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21 Comments

Im appalled by one anonymous writer who wrote that he is innocent is sadly mistaken, I know for a fact that he did it as I know his family. He is getting exactly what he deserves. There are no "real" killers out there he is sitting in prison waiting to meet satan.

As a friend of one of the victims I say HELL yes he deserves it. He took the life of a very beautiful, wonderful friend, sister and aunt way too soon!!!!!!!!

I know Eric Hanson is innocent.

He was wrongly convicted of a crime that he did not have the skill set to perform. This was not a crime of passion...these murders were well planned out, and Eric had nothing to do with them.

However, there was motive, but not with Eric. If Eric wanted to use all his parents money, he would not have killed them. A person would have to be severely retarded to kill a number of people and think he could get away with the murders. Eric is not retarded.

Also, anyone killing someone would never be at the murder scene sleeping, again, unless the person was severely retarded. This was a rush to judgment, bases on circumstantial evidence. To kill people and not leave any DNA is one sign of professional murderers.

Sadly the only people who were retarded were on the prosecution team. And they got an award for their work.

That the Hanson family was murdered was a terrible reality. That the real killers have gone scott free is another horrible reality.

Kill him.

The most relevant point made by those against the death penalty, in my opinion, are those who are wrongfully convicted. If we are to have a death penalty I do think it is in the best interest of society and humanity that we never allow the government to wrongfully execute an innocent person. Right now police departments, in general, have a credibility issue in terms of making sure innocent people are not wrongfully charged. Likewise, the lawyers have allowed the legal system to be bastardized to the extent that murderers are allowed to go free and innocent people can be executed. Apathetic Americans have allowed our legal system to evolve away from JUSTICE and become just another industry fueled by MONEY and POWER. Mix money and power together and it doesn't take long to find CORRUPTION.

Beyond that I really do not get the point of warehousing killers for the rest of their natural life. This serves no useful or humane purpose other than to relieve the personal conscience of a noisy few who disagree with the majority of society.

Most of us have remorse when we do something wrong, especially when we do something really bad. Remorse is not a character trait typically found in killers. It is not like they are sitting around for years anguishing over the mistakes they made wondering what will become them on judgement day like most good, decent people would. They could care less. They are sociopaths. And just so I'm clear on this point... the death penalty is NOT a deterrent to crime. Sociopaths are not swayed by any deterrents. Even decent people who snap and get blinded by rage are not thinking about consequences at that exact moment. People who kill with premeditation are not deterred. They just try to think things thru to avoid detection.

The biggest problem is that most, good decent people try to rationalize killers in terms of themselves and how they live their own lives. Yet the vast majority of these good, decent people have never been face-to-face with a killer nor have they ever visited a prison. Killers are not like us at all and that is why we have prisons to keep them away from good decent people.

We can wish murders did not happen, but wishing won't change or solve anything. Maybe one day science will give us the tools to look inside minds or dna or something to figure out causes or cures. Until then, decent people need to be able to live their lives in peace, with some level of security, and confidence the government is doing something to keep them safe.

Jails do not have foolproof security. Killers escape fairly regularly. Even sentences like "life without parole" often turns into something far less. And that is after how hard it sometimes can be to even get the truly guilty convicted.

Until something truly better comes along I am fine with the death penalty.

I'd take his head and put in a vice and then, maybe then, we'll get an idea of what punishment is. Even then, I'd fear what hell will be like for him as the deepest depths are reserved for him.


Moderatort Jim: So is that a for or against the death penalty?

The death penalty was invented for people like Eric. Life in prison is too nice for him. My tax dollars aren't for housing the likes of him. They should execute him like he executed his mother. He shot her in the face. How much more cold blooded can you get? Or maybe beat him to death and let him suffer and bleed to death like he did his sister. Either way--he's a waste of skin.

He should be sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.

Yes, stop wasting money putting these people in jails for decades. Kill them as fast as possible.

UHHHHH...Yes!

Let's take a look at Life without Parole in an Illinois prison- free health care for life, free cable TV for life, free room and board for life, access to a free high school or college education, none of life's worries such as paying bills or trying to hold on to a job. As the Reverend Jesse Jackson once said, going to prison is a step up in life for many prisoners.

Some sentence for brutally killing four innocent people. Hanson deserves the juice and nothing less.

I believe he deserves the death penalty. Why waste taxpayers' dollars on a man that choose to slaughter his own family for money.

Life w/out parole and hard labor contributing back to society every day for the rest of his life.

Denny, actually, I think you're agreeing with jlc. The commenter's name appears after the post, below the solid line.

The death penalty is cold blooded murder by the state. Violence begets violence.

I agree with Ted, but with proviso that nobody deserves the death penalty. Although this may be efficient it is wrong to kill. This is true for babies and criminals. Give him a real punishment...Life without parole. Remember we are also under the death penalty, but are relatively free to enjoy our remaining time. Let him suffer!

If anyone should get the death penalty, he should.

The update today is that the jury spent just 30 minutes deliberating before announcing that Hanson is eligible for the death penalty. Now the sentencing phase begins in earnest, and by midweek next week the jury could render a verdict sentencing Hanson to death.

If he's not worthy of the death penalty than no one is.

To put this as simply as I can, Eric Hanson snuffed out four innocent lives for 100,000 pieces of green paper.

What is worse, these were four members of his own family, but in the eyes of Eric Hanson, four family members are worth less than 100,000 pieces of green paper.

It is obvious that Eric Hanson holds little value in the sanctity of life, not to mention the sanctity of honor, or truth, or honesty.

All Eric Hanson seems to value are 100,000 pieces of green paper.

To us, these pieces of green paper are what we call money.

But as far as Eric Hanson is concerned, now that he has lost his right to liberty, to freedom, what we call money are just pieces of green paper as far as he is concerned.

There is only two more pieces of paper that matter here.

One that will reinstate the death penalty in this state.

The other authorizing Eric Hanson to pay the Ultimate Price for what he did.

Until then, Eric Hanson can sit quietly in a cell, wondering and contemplating if those 100,000 of green paper were worth the lives of his own kin.

In a case like Hansons where its proven that he killed four people then yes I think he should get the death penalty. This case is alot different from the wrongful convictions before Governor Ryan cleared Death Row. When witnesses of questionable background testify, when theres not alot of physical evidence, when the state relies alot on testimony of cops to convict, those are all red flags. They should bring back the death penalty but make sure only people who deserve it beyond any doubt get it.

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This page contains a single entry by Naperville Sun editors published on February 21, 2008 6:55 AM.

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