Colorado Attorney General Ken Salazar says the state's death penalty is thoughtful, careful and prudent.
His comments came in a letter to lawmakers outlining the state's policies.
Responding to mass pardons of death row felons in Illinois, Salazar told legislative leaders today the state's four-step sentencing process is one of the most protective in the country.
He says the state only applies the death penalty in rare and aggravated cases.
The letter was sent to leaders in the House and Senate.