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Abolition of the death penalty in 12 nations Crime rate change

There has been much debate over the use of the death penalty. Advocates of the death penalty feel that the penalty will reduce crime. However, as we have seen in recent years, it is being revealed that many innocent individuals may have been falsely convicted and sentenced to death due to prejudiced jurors and mishandling of evidence.

The following table represents 12 nations that had abolished the death penalty. What you are about to view is the nation's homicide rate one year before the abolition of the death penalty and then one year after the death penalty.

Is there a difference in the change in crime rates from one year to the other? (95% level of confidence). Please explain.

Country with date of Abolition
First Number: Homicide rate 1 year before abolition (per 100,000 pop.)
Second Number: Homicide rate 1 year after abolition

Austria (1968)
.72
.71

England (1965)
.36
.35

Finland (1949)
1.05
.72

Israel (1954)
4.00
1.72

Italy (1890)
13.30
12.94

Sweden (1921)
.43
.15

Switzerland (1942)
45.25
35.65

Canada (1967)
1.10
1.52

Denmark (1930)
33.89
35.68

Netherlands (1957)
13.19
20.32

New Zealand (1961)
.04
.08

Norway (1905)
.35
.39

Dane Archer and Rosemary Gartner, Violence and Crime in Cross-National Perspective; New Haven: Yale University Press, 1984, p. 133-135 HV6030.A75

Solution Preview

We use t-test since the sample size is only 12.
By calculating the differences , we have
0.01
0.01
0.33
2.28
0.36
0.28
9.6
-0.42
-1.79
-7.13
-0.04
-0.04

With mean=0.2875 and ...

Solution Summary

Abolition of the death penalty in 12 nations is examined to determine if the crime rate changed.

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