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NC House panel votes to bar death row TVs

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RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- A House committee has voted to prohibit North Carolina death row inmates from watching television, although the warden for the condemned prisoners warned removing the TVs could increase violence at Central Prison.

A divided judiciary panel recommended the ban Wednesday.

The bill's chief proponent said the measure is a response to a convicted killer's letter talking about a life of leisure and watching color TV on death row. Rep. Tim Moore of Cleveland County said colleagues should support anything to make death row a less pleasant place.

Central Prison Warden Kenneth Lassiter told the committee television is a management tool for idle prisoners and said the prisoner who wrote the letter - Danny Hembree - doesn't have access to TV anymore.

The bill's next stop is the full House.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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