Capital Punishment Procedure Act


Published: 1926-03-22

Subscribe to a Global-Regulation Premium Membership Today!

Key Benefits:

Subscribe Now for only USD$20 per month, or Get a Day Pass for only USD$4.99.
Capital Punishment Procedure Act
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE [CH.94 – 1


–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
[Original Service 2001] STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE
CHAPTER 94

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE

ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

SECTION

1. Short title and interpretation.
2. Form of sentence of death.
3. Judge to forward notes of evidence to Minister.
4. Governor-General to communicate to judge copy of any order made.
5. Death warrant.
6. Provost Marshal to carry out sentence.
7. Place of execution.
8. Persons present at execution.
9. Medical officer to certify.
10. Coroner to hold inquest.
11. Place of burial.
12. Immateriality of time and place of execution mentioned in judgment.
13. Saving as to non-compliance with directions.
14. Rules.
15. Sentence of death not to be passed on pregnant woman
16. In case of pardon for capital offence Governor-General may order penal servitude.
17. Forms may be varied.

FIRST SCHEDULE — Form of Death Warrant.
SECOND SCHEDULE — Certificate of Medical Officer.
THIRD SCHEDULE —Warrant of Reprieve.


CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE [CH.94 – 3


–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
[Original Service 2001] STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS

CHAPTER 94

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE
An Act relating to capital punishment.

[Commencement 22nd March, 1926]
1. (1) This Act may be cited as the Capital

Punishment Procedure Act.
(2) In this Act “Minister” means the Minister for the

time being designated under paragraph (2) of Article 90 of
the Constitution.

2. Every sentence of death shall be to the effect
only that the person condemned shall “suffer death in the
manner authorised by law”. A certificate, under the hand of
the Registrar, that such sentence has been passed and
naming the person sentenced shall be sufficient authority
for the detention of such person.

3. So soon as conveniently may be after any sentence
of death has been pronounced, the presiding judge shall
forward to the Minister his notes of the evidence taken at
the trial with a report in writing containing any
recommendation or observations on the case which he
may think fit to make. The Minister shall cause such report
together with such other information derived from the
record of the case or elsewhere as the Minister may require to
be taken into consideration at a meeting of the Advisory
Committee on the Prerogative of Mercy constituted under
Article 91 of the Constitution.

4. The Governor-General acting in accordance with
the advice of the Minister after consulting the said
Advisory Committee in regard to the case hall commu-
nicate to the said judge or his successor in office a copy
under his hand of any order he may make thereon, which
order if the sentence is to be carried out shall state the
place where and the time when the execution is to be had,
and if the sentence is commuted into any other punishment
shall state what punishment or if the person sentenced is


7 of 1926
7 of 1935
23 of 1959
G.N. 172/1964
43 of 1964
S.I. 40/1969
E.L.A.O., 1974

Short title and
interpretation.

S.I. 40/1969;
E.L.A.O., 1974.

Form of sentence
of death.
23 of 1959, s. 2.

Judge to forward
notes of evidence
to Minister.
S.I. 40/1969.

43 of 1964, Third
Sch.

Governor-
General to
communicate to
judge copy of
any order made.
S.I. 40/1969.

CH.94 – 4] CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE





STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]

pardoned shall state the fact. On receiving such order the
judge shall cause the effect thereof to be entered on the
record of the court.

5. (1) If the sentence is to be carried out the
Governor-General shall also cause a warrant under his
hand and the Public Seal to be issued setting out the place
where and the time when the execution is to be had as
prescribed in the order aforesaid.

(2) Such warrant shall be called a death warrant
and shall be in the form in the First Schedule to this Act.

6. Such warrant shall be directed to the Provost
Marshal who is charged with the carrying out of all
executions within New Providence.

7. Judgment to be executed on any prisoner
sentenced to suffer death shall be carried into effect within
the walls of the prison in New Providence:

Provided that the Governor-General may in any case,
if he thinks fit, direct that any such judgment may be
carried into effect at some convenient place in the
immediate neighbourhood of the spot where the crime was
committed in respect of which such judgment was
pronounced, and such judgment shall be carried into effect
accordingly by such person as the Governor-General may
direct.

8. (1) At an execution in New Providence —
(a) the Provost Marshal, gaoler, chaplain and

medical officer and such other officers of the
prison as the Provost Marshal requires shall be
present at the execution;

(b) no other person unless expressly authorised in
writing by the Provost Marshal shall be present.

(2) If the execution is carried out in an Out Island
such persons shall and may be present as the Governor-
General may direct.

9. (1) After judgment of death has been executed
on the prisoner the medical officer shall examine the body
of the prisoner and shall ascertain the fact of death and
shall sign a certificate thereof and deliver the same to the
Provost Marshal.

Death warrant.

First Schedule.

Provost Marshal
to carry out
sentence.

Place of
execution.

Persons present
at execution.

Medical officer
to certify.

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE [CH.94 – 5


–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
[Original Service 2001] STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS

(2) The Provost Marshal, gaolers and chaplain and
such justices of the peace or other persons present (if any)
as may be required or allowed shall also sign a declaration
in triplicate to the effect that judgment of death has been
executed on the prisoner. One of such declarations shall be
posted on the outer gate of the prison in which the
judgment has been carried out or other conspicuous place
close to the place of execution.

(3) The certificate and declaration in this section
mentioned shall be in the respective forms in the Second
Schedule to this Act.

(4) Any person who knowingly and wilfully signs
any false certificate or declaration hereby required shall be
guilty of misdemeanour, and on conviction thereof shall be
liable at the discretion of the court to imprisonment for two
years with or without solitary confinement.

10. (1) Within twelve hours after the execution the
coroner for New Providence, if the execution has been
carried out within New Providence, or the commissioner
for the district in which the execution has been carried out
if the execution has been carried out in a place other than
in New Providence, shall hold an inquest on the body of
the prisoner and the jury of the inquest shall enquire into
and ascertain the identity of the body and whether
judgment of death was duly executed on the prisoner. No
officer of the prison or prisoner confined therein shall in
any case be a juror on the inquest.

(2) Such inquisition shall be in duplicate and one of
the originals shall be forwarded to the Registrar of the
Supreme Court to be filed on record in his office. The other
shall be forwarded to the Attorney-General.

11. The body of every person executed shall be
buried in such place as the Governor-General shall order.

12. Nothing in any law or usage in The Bahamas shall
be held to constitute either the time or the place of
execution an essential part of any sentence of death
pronounced by the court upon any person, so as to render
the sentence spent or vacated by reason that the person
was not executed at the time or place appointed.

Provost Marshal
and others to
declare.

Second Schedule.

Coroner to hold
inquest.

G.N. 172/1964.

Place of burial.

Immateriality of
time and place of
execution
mentioned in
judgment.

CH.94 – 6] CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE





STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]

13. Omission to comply with any of the provisions
herein contained with reference to the execution of
judgment of death shall not make such execution illegal in
any case where such execution would otherwise have been
legal.

14. The Governor-General may make such rules to
be observed on the execution of judgment of death as he
may deem expedient, for the purpose as well as guarding
against any abuse in such execution, as also of giving
greater solemnity to the same, and of making known the
fact that such execution is taking place or has taken place.

15. (1) Where a woman convicted of an offence
punishable with death is found in accordance with the
provisions of this Act to be pregnant, the sentence to be
passed on her shall be a sentence of penal servitude for life
instead of sentence of death.

(2) Where a woman convicted of an offence punish-
able with death alleges that she is pregnant, or where the
court before whom a woman is so convicted thinks fit so to
order, the question whether or not the woman is pregnant
shall, before sentence is passed on her, be determined by a
jury.

(3) Subject to the provisions of this subsection, the
said jury shall be the trial jury, that is to say, the jury to
whom she was given in charge to be tried for the offence,
and the members of the jury need not be resworn:

Provided that —
(a) if any member of the trial jury, either before or

after the conviction, dies or is discharged by the
court as being through illness incapable of
continuing to act or for any other cause, the
inquiry as to whether or not the woman is
pregnant shall proceed without him; and

(b) where there is no trial jury, or where a jury have
disagreed as to whether the woman is or is not
pregnant, or have been discharged by the court
without giving a verdict on that question, the
jury shall be constituted as if to try whether or
not she was fit to plead, and shall be sworn in
such manner as the court may direct.

Saving as to non-
compliance with
directions.

Rules.

Sentence of death
not to be passed
on pregnant
woman
7 of 1935, s. 2.

Procedure where
woman convicted
of capital offence
alleges she is
pregnant.

Composition of
jury.

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE [CH.94 – 7


–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
[Original Service 2001] STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS

(4) The question whether the woman is pregnant or
not shall be determined by the jury on such evidence as
may be laid before them either on the part of the woman or
on the part of the Crown, and the jury shall find that the
woman is not pregnant unless it is proved affirmatively to
their satisfaction that she is pregnant.

16. (1) Whenever the Royal Prerogative of Mercy be
exercised in favour of any person convicted of any capital
offence it shall be lawful for the Governor-General acting
in accordance with the advice of the Minister after
consultation with the Advisory Committee on the Pre-
rogative of Mercy constituted under Article 91 of the
Constitution to order such person to undergo penal
servitude for any period he may think fit and every such
person shall thereupon be subject to be treated and dealt
with in all respects as if he had been originally sentenced to
penal servitude under any Act.

(2) The warrant directing that such person shall
undergo penal servitude instead of the sentence of the
court shall be in the form of the Third Schedule to this Act.

17. The forms in the Schedules to this Act may be
varied or added to as circumstances may require.

FIRST SCHEDULE (Section 5(2)).

FORM OF DEATH WARRANT


Royal
Crest



BAHAMA ISLANDS.
Governor-General.

By His Excellency (insert here the
name and Orders of His Excellency
the Governor-General for the time
being), Governor-General of The
Bahamas.



Method of proof.

In case of pardon
for capital
offence
Governor-
General may
order penal
servitude.
43 of 1964,
Third Sch.;
S.I. 40/1969.

Third Schedule.

Forms may be
varied.

CH.94 – 8] CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE





STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]



WHEREAS in the Supreme Court of Our Lady the Queen,
holden in the City of Nassau in the island of New Providence,
before The Honourable Chief Justice (or Mr. Justice) (insert
name of the Chief Justice or Justice) Chief Justice (or Justice)
of the said Court in the (insert month) Sessions, (insert name of
condemned person) was in due form of law convicted and
received Sentence of Death for the Crime of Murder as in the
Information is mentioned.

AND WHEREAS in consultation with the Advisory
Committee on the Prerogative of Mercy established under the
Constitution the Minister designated on that behalf under
paragraph (2) of Article 90 of the Constitution has taken into
consideration the facts of the case as shown by the notes of the
evidence taken at the trial by the said (insert name of judge)
Chief Justice (or Justice) his report thereon and such other
information as has been made available.

AND WHEREAS the Minister so designated as aforesaid
has advised me that this is not a proper case for the exercise of
the Royal Prerogative of Mercy.

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that you (insert name of
Provost Marshal) Provost Marshal, are charged with the
carrying out of the sentence of the said Court upon (insert name
of condemned person) on the ................. day of
.............................. in the year of Our Lord One Thousand Nine
Hundred and ........................ at the hour of ......... o’clock in the
forenoon of that day and that such sentence shall be carried out
(within the precincts of the prison in the Island of New
Providence or at such other place as may be directed).
Given under my Hand and the

Public Seal of The Bahamas at
Government House in the City of
Nassau, in the Island of New
Providence.this ................ day of
.................... A.D., 19 ....... and in
the ................................... year of
Her Majesty’s Reign.

By His Excellency’s Command.
.............................................

Minister designated under
paragraph (2) of Article 90
of the Constitution.



S.I. 40/1969.

S.I. 40/1969.

S.I. 40/1969.

CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE [CH.94 – 9


–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
[Original Service 2001] STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS

SECOND SCHEDULE (Section 9(1), (3))

CERTIFICATE OF MEDICAL OFFICER

I, A.B., a Medical Officer (or as the case may be) of
(describe prison or place) hereby certify that I this day
examined the body of C.D., on whom judgment of death
was this day executed at (describe same prison or place)
and that on such examination I found that the said C.D. was
dead.

Dated this .......................... day of ........................................
(Signed) ......................................... A.B.

DECLARATION OF PROVOST MARSHAL AND OTHERS
(Section 9(2), (3))

We the undersigned hereby declare that judgment of
death was this day executed in (describe prison or place) on
C.D. in our presence.

Dated this .......................day of ...........................................
(Signed) .............................................
E.F., Provost Marshal.

L.M., Justice of the Peace.
G.H., Gaoler of
J.K., Chaplain of etc.

THIRD SCHEDULE (Section 16(2))

WARRANT OF REPRIEVE


Royal
Crest



BAHAMA ISLANDS
Governor-General

By His Excellency (insert here the
name and Orders of His Excellency
the Governor-General for the time
being), Governor-General of The
Bahamas.



CH.94 – 10] CAPITAL PUNISHMENT PROCEDURE





STATUTE LAW OF THE BAHAMAS [Original Service 2001]



WHEREAS in the Supreme Court of Our Lady the Queen,
holden in the City of Nassau in the Island of New Providence,
before The Honourable Chief Justice (or Mr. Justice) (insert
name of the Chief Justice or Justice) Chief Justice.(or Justice)
of said Court in the (insert month) Sessions, (insert name of
condemned person) was in due form of law convicted and
received Sentence of Death for the Crime of Murder as in the
Information is mentioned.

AND WHEREAS in consultation with the Advisory
Committee on the Prerogative of Mercy established under the
Constitution the Minister designated on that behalf under
paragraph (2) of Article 90 of the Constitution has taken into
consideration the facts of the case as shown by the notes of the
evidence taken at the trial by the said (insert name of judge)
Chief Justice (or Justice) his report thereon and such other
information as has been made available.

AND WHEREAS the Minister so designated as aforesaid
has advised me that this is a proper instance in which to
exercise the Royal Prerogative of Mercy; I do by and in
accordance with the power in me vested hereby exercise the
Royal Prerogative of Mercy in favour of the said (insert name
of condemned person).

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that you (insert name of
Provost Marshal) Provost Marshal, do not carry out the
sentence of the said Court upon the said (insert name of
condemned person) but that you keep the said (insert name of
condemned person) to penal servitude (for life or term of years
as may be ordered).
Given under my Hand and the

Public Seal of The Bahamas at
Government House in the City
of Nassau, in the Island of New
Providence.this .............. day of
............... A.D., 19 .......... and in
the .............……...... year of
Her Majesty’s Reign.

By His Excellency’s Command.
.............................................

Minister designated under
paragraph (2) of Article 90
of the Constitution.



S.I. 40/1969.

S.I. 40/1969.

S.I. 40/1969.