A Visual Database: Five Texas Counties Are Among the National Top 10 in Executions

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Today Texas executed yet another prisoner – this time, an African American woman. The Death Penalty Information Center maintains an extensive database of executions including names, dates, and race. It is nice but a bit hard to use. So I built a visual interactive site from the data that lets anyone explore the information and build maps or filtered views. To put the Lone Star State in perspective, 5 of the Top 10 counties in terms of executions are located in Texas. And if Harris, Texas were a state rather than a county, it would actually be among the national leaders in total executions. It gets worse. Although the population of only 19% African-American, Blacks make up over 50% of all executions in Harris County since 1976. You can filter through the various visualizations to clearly see the data on how Texas compares to the rest of the country in terms of executions.

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