Was the amendment a good idea?
Furman v. Georgia, 1972
William Furman was sentenced to death after he was found guilty of murder while he was attempting to burglarize a house. Furman appealed before the court. According to Justice Potter Stewart, the death penalty was clearly handed out to Furman mainly because he was a black man. Thus, it violated the Eighth Amendment.
Wilkerson v. Utah, 1878
Walker Wilkerson was found guilty of first-degree murder in 1878. The court decided that Wilkerson would be executed publicly. The defendant made an appeal on the ground that hanging was the approved form of execution at the time and not firing squad (method of capital punishment mostly common in the military and in times of war).However, the Supreme Court favored the decision.
Gregg v. Georgia, 1976
Tony Gregg was sentenced to death after he was found guilty for armed robbery and murder. Gregg believed that the sentence was unconstitutional. However, the Supreme Court argued against his claim. He already underwent two separate trials, which carefully considered several mitigating and aggravating factors.