By CATHERINE WELCH
PROVIDENCE, RI – Eight groups are praising Governor Lincoln Chafee for refusing to turn over an accused killer to the federal government for prosecution.
Chafee turned down a request last week to hand over Jason Pleau who is charged with robbing and killing a Woonsocket gas station manager.
The governor says he could not in good conscience subject a Rhode Islander to the death penalty.
Capital punishment was abolished in Rhode Island in 1852 but is allowed by the federal government.
A coalition of groups including the Urban League, the Rhode Island Council of Churches and the American Civil Liberties Union say the governor's actions uphold the state's longstanding opposition to the death penalty.
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