Gov. Scott Signs Bill Speeding Up Capital Punishment

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida is speeding up how quickly it carries out the death penalty.

Gov. Rick Scott on Friday signed into law a measure designed to accelerate the state's capital punishment process. That process has been criticized for allowing some condemned inmates to languish for decades on death row.

The "Timely Justice Act of 2013" creates tighter timeframes for appeals, post-conviction motions and imposes reporting requirements on case progress.

It also re-establishes a separate agency for north Florida to provide appellate-level legal representation to inmates sentenced to death, and requires them to "pursue all possible remedies in state court."

Two former death row inmates who were exonerated say they fear the changes could lead to the execution of people who are innocent.

There are currently 405 inmates on death row.

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