Beth McCann

District Attorney

Second Judical District

201 W, Colfax Ave, Dept. 801
Denver, CO 80202


News Release

January 26, 2021 Contact: Carolyn Tyler, Communications Director,, 720-913-9025

Denver DA Beth McCann Urges President Biden to End the Federal Death Penalty

McCann Joins with Nearly 100 Criminal Justice Leaders in Calling for Definitive Steps to Dismantle Executions

DENVER—Denver District Attorney Beth McCann joined a bipartisan group of nearly 100 criminal justice leaders — including more than 50 current elected local prosecutors (district attorneys, state’s attorneys, prosecuting attorneys, county attorneys and commonwealth’s attorneys), seven current attorneys general, seven current and former police chiefs and sheriffs, and 20 former U.S. Attorneys, DOJ officials and judges —in sending a letter to President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris yesterday urging them to take all actions within their power to immediately and definitively end the death penalty in the United States.

“I do not believe the government should be in the business of executing people,” said DA McCann. “The death penalty is unnecessary to protect public safety, costly, arbitrary and tinged with racial bias. Colorado did away with the death penalty last year and it is now time for the federal government to do the same which is why I am urging President Biden and Vice President Harris to once and for all repeal capital punishment.”

The letter, organized by Fair and Just Prosecution calls on the new administration to take multifaceted and lasting steps that future administrations cannot readily undo, to include: commuting the sentences of all those on federal death row and withdrawing current death penalty warrants, dismantling the death chamber at Terre Haute, encouraging DOJ leadership to instruct all federal prosecutors to not seek the death penalty in future cases, supporting and incentivizing state efforts to end capital punishment, and supporting legislation to end the federal death penalty.

After the Trump administration rushed to execute 13 people in its last six months in office, putting countless additional lives in danger as a COVID-19 outbreak took over federal death row, the signatories make clear that a moratorium is insufficient to end our nation’s use of the death penalty: “[A]t a time when racial injustice, trust in law enforcement, and our nation’s reputation in the eyes of the world are all in dire need of repair, anything short of these steps would fail to move our nation forward or attend to these pressing crises. We should not leave the lives of all people still on federal death row — and many more who will become entangled with the federal system — in the hands of future administrations.”

Read the letter and see the full list of signatories here.