04/19/2012 09:56 am ET Updated Jun 19, 2012

Does Death Penalty Deters Murder? Experts Can't Tell

Many Americans support capital punishment, but researchers can't tell whether it deters murder since the studies being used are badly flawed.

That's basically the finding of experts brought together to research the question on behalf of the National Research Council and uncovered flaw after flaw in the studies.

For instance, the studies didn't consider how punishments like life in prison may alter the homicide rate and also assumed that murderers are able to determine their risk of execution.