Angela Corey is the state attorney in Florida's fourth district. You may know her for her failure to convict George Zimmerman, and her failure to convict Michael Dunn of first degree murder. She is, however, excellent at sending black people to death row.
It would be unfair to judge Angela Corey purely on the outcome of two cases in which she failed to convict non-black men of murdering young black men. To get a full sense of Angela Corey's value as a prosecutor of murder cases, it is imperative to look at her entire record. A Florida Times-Union story by Larry Hannan published this weekend does just that.
And here is her record:
Corey's office has sent 21 people to Death Row, and 18 of them are still there with the other three getting off Death Row on appeal. No other current prosecutor in the state has put more than seven people on Death Row since the start of 2009...
According to statistics from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the 4th Circuit had 367 murders from 2009 to 2012. Statistics were not available after that.
During the same period, Miami-Dade County had 867 murders. But from the start of 2009, Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle has put only five people on Death Row.
A few things can be stated with little controversy: the prosecutor's personal discretion plays a paramount role when it comes to the decision of whether or not to seek the death penalty. Angela Corey has few rivals when it comes to pursuing executions. Corey's district has well under 10% of Florida's population, but has produced more than 25% of Florida's death row inmates during her years in office. And, the ACLU adds, "Of the 21 men she has put on death row since 2009, 14 are African American, or 66% of the total. Blacks account for just 16% of Florida's population."
So Angela Corey can proudly say that her zeal for harsh punishment has made her one of our nation's most effective people at getting black men condemned to death. In that, she is part of a long Jacksonville tradition.