SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - Just minutes after Illinois Governor Pat Quinn abolished the death penalty in the state, he commuted the sentences of all 15 inmates remaining on Illinois' death row.
"We have found over and over again: Mistakes have been made. Innocent people have been freed. It's not possible to create a perfect, mistake-free death penalty system," Quinn said.
The cases of the death row inmates go as far back as 1983. The 15 men will now serve life in prison with no hope of parole.
Rodney Adkins (Cook County) • Murdered Oak Park resident Catherine McAvinchey in 2003.
Teodoro Baez (Cook County) • Killed two victims in a 2000 Chicago-area drug dispute, then dismembered the bodies with a sword.
Dion Banks (Cook County) • Shot a woman to death in front of her two young sons in a 2001 carjacking.
Joseph Bannister (Cook County) • Attacked his ex-girlfriend and killed her sister in 2001.
David A. Damm (Jo Daviess) • Murdered 13-year-old Donnisha Hill in 2006.
Brian J. Dugan (DuPage County) • Raped and murdered Jeanine Nicarico, 10, in 1983 after abducting her from her Naperville home while she was home sick from school. (Two other men were earlier sent to death row for the crime, then exonerated.)
Eric Hanson (DuPage County) • Murdered his parents, sister and brother-in-law in 2005.
Ricardo Harris (Cook County) • Killed two liquor store clerks in a 1999 robbery.
Anthony B. Mertz (Coles County) • Murdered and mutilated Eastern Illinois University student Shannon McNamara, 21, in 2001. He told jurors he was drunk and wasn't certain whether he had committed the crime.
Gary D. Pate (White County) • Convicted in the 2006 shooting deaths of his estranged wife and her 19-year-old daughter.
Daniel B. Ramsey (Hancock County) • Shot to death two girls, ages 12 and 16, during a 1996 attack on his former girlfriend.
Paul F. Runge (Cook County) • Raped and murdered a woman and her 10-year-old daughter in their Chicago apartment in 2001.
Cecil S. Sutherland (Jefferson County) • Abducted, raped and murdered 10-year-old Amy Schulz of Kell, Ill., in 1987.
Edward Tenney (DuPage County) • Shot a stranded motorist four times in the head at close range in 1992.
Andrew Urdiales (Livingston County) • Murdered a 21-year-old woman.