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Gavin Newsom, D-Calif., signed an executive order Wednesday placing an indefinite moratorium on capital punishment, saying it goes against Californians' "values".

Since the last execution in 2006, court battles have been waged over methods by which prisoners can be executed. Twenty-four people now on California's death row were convicted of murder and have exhausted all of their appeals, the Times reported.

"I met someone yesterday who said this is about eradicating evil, and you have a responsibility to eradicate evil by executing those on death row", he said.

"Here is the bottom line: Our death penalty system has been - by any measure - a failure", Newsom said in a statement, according to Politico.

While the governor's move is certain to be challenged in court, aides cite his power to grant reprieves written into the state Constitution. Butin order to have lasting impact, the reprieve should be used to find a more permanent solution, Durham says. It has wasted billions of taxpayer dollars. "The intentional killing of another person is wrong". The five were eventually exonerated and paid $41 million by the state after another man confessed to the assault. Republican Illinois Gov. George Ryan was the first to do so since 2000 and later was followed by Pennsylvania, Washington and Oregon.

Responding to victims and rights groups who've spoken out against the move, Newsom said he hopes more can be done to support them without handing down death sentences.

Newsom thinks the death penalty is expensive, and flawed.

San Quentin State Prison in California
Gov. Gavin Newsom Suspends Death Penalty In California

The order will also immediately close the execution chamber at San Quentin and states that the directive "does not provide for the release of any individual from prison or otherwise alter any current conviction or sentence", according to Newsom's office.

"It's a very emotional place that I stand", Newsom told reporters.

The California Correctional Peace Officers Association supported Newsom's election past year, but is among law enforcement organizations and victims' rights groups that oppose repeal. "Other people I've seen literally put to death for lesser crimes, and that concerns me".

He was convicted by a Los Angeles County court of the 1977 beating deaths of two elderly Long Beach women, one of whom he also raped with a wine bottle, the Los Angeles Times reported. Newsom's moratorium will therefore fly in the face of the most recent expression of the views of the people of California. But most of all, the death penalty is absolute. "But we can not advance the death penalty in an effort to soften the blow of what happened [to victims]". "I've carved out my piece of all this". Voter efforts failed in 2012 and 2016, and voters approved a measure past year to speed up the time from conviction to execution.

The governor is meant to sign the new order later on Wednesday.

Human Rights Watch said that with the governor´s decision, California continues a trend in the United States away from putting people to death.