Date of Award

January 2020

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Document Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Justice Studies

First Advisor

Kevin I. Minor

Department Affiliation

Justice Studies

Second Advisor

Kristie R. Blevins

Department Affiliation

Justice Studies

Third Advisor

Judah Schept

Department Affiliation

Justice Studies


Dissimilarities by race-of-defendant and race-of-victim have received ample attention in capital punishment literature, predominately in regard to death sentencing. Much less attention has been provided to the intersection of race and gender-of-victim with utilization of execution data, and research has failed to adequately address this topic in a historical context. In this exploratory study, I seek to identify multivariate correlates of executions involving characterizations of defendant race as well as victim race x gender characterizations since 1977. More specifically, I use multivariate analyses to examine possible predictors of executions elucidated defendant race x victim race and gender amalgamations. Among the predictor variables included in the models are historical executions of black males for general sex crimes, as well as historical lynchings by state and county of conviction. Lastly, implications are examined for future death penalty research and generally for understanding capital punishment’s modern usage in relation to its sordid history.