Republican Gov. Chris Sununu has vetoed a bill that would have abolished New Hampshire's death penalty.
Sununu said Thursday while he respects arguments made by death penalty opponents, the state has an obligation to support law enforcement and deliver justice for victims. Police officers crowded into his office Thursday to watch him veto the bill, as did family members of several murder victims.
New Hampshire hasn't executed anyone since 1939, and its narrowly-drawn law applies to murders of police officers and judges, or killings during kidnappings, robberies or rape.
The repeal bill would not have applied to the state's only inmate on death row, Michael Addison, who killed a Manchester police officer in 2006. Sununu gave his red veto pen to Laura Briggs, wife of slain officer Michael Briggs.