Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) said April 12 he plans on signing a bill abolishing the death penalty after the state House of Representatives voted 86-63 April 11 to repeal the law.

“I’m pleased the House passed the bill, and when it gets to my desk I will sign it,” said Malloy in a statement.

“I want to be careful in the tone of my remarks, out of respect for the gravity of the issue at hand and out of respect for people on both sides of the issue,” he continued.

“When I sign this bill, Connecticut will join 16 other states and almost every other industrialized nation in moving toward what I believe is better public policy.”

Part of the reason for this turning point was that families of victims wanted to strike the death penalty from the books. Elizabeth Brancato, whose mother was murdered in 1979, lobbied legislators in the state against execution for years according to the Associated Press. She said “it was one of the best moments of my life,” when it cleared the Senate last week.

The law even garnered support from eight Republican statehouse members. Retiring Rep. Lile Gibbons, who voted to keep the law three years ago, said it is time for her state to move in a different direction.

“I think it’s somewhat barbaric to be putting people to death in this day and age,” Gibbons told Greenwich “I don’t believe in an eye-for–an-eye.”

New Jersey, New York, New Mexico and Illinois have repealed the law in the past five years. California will have a ballot initiative in November while Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley is making a push to get the law repealed in that state.