Title 17, Chapter 10, Section 35
(a) Whenever the death penalty is imposed, upon the judgment
becoming final in the trial court, the sentence shall be reviewed on
the record by the Supreme Court of Georgia. The clerk of the trial
court, within ten days after receiving the transcript, shall
transmit the entire record and transcript to the Supreme Court
together with a notice prepared by the clerk and a report prepared
by the trial judge. The notice shall set forth the title and docket
number of the case, the name of the defendant and the name and
address of his attorney, a narrative statement of the judgment, the
offense, and the punishment prescribed. The report shall be in the
form of a standard questionnaire prepared and supplied by the
(b) The Supreme Court shall consider the punishment as well as any
errors enumerated by way of appeal.
(c) With regard to the sentence, the court shall determine:
(1) Whether the sentence of death was imposed under the influence
of passion, prejudice, or any other arbitrary factor;
(2) Whether, in cases other than treason or aircraft hijacking, the evidence supports the jury's or judge's finding of a statutory aggravating circumstance as enumerated in subsection (b) of Code Section 17-10-30; and
(3) Whether the sentence of death is excessive or disproportionate
to the penalty imposed in similar cases, considering both the
crime and the defendant.
(d) Both the defendant and the state shall have the right to submit
briefs within the time provided by the court and to present oral
argument to the court.
(e) The court shall include in its decision a reference to those
similar cases which it took into consideration. In addition to its
authority regarding correction of errors, the court, with regard to
review of death sentences, shall be authorized to:
(1) Affirm the sentence of death; or
(2) Set the sentence aside and remand the case for resentencing by the trial judge based on the record and argument of counsel. The records of those similar cases referred to by the Supreme Court in its decision and the extracts prepared as provided for in subsection (a) of Code Section 17-10-37 shall be provided to the resentencing judge for his consideration.
(f) The sentence review shall be in addition to direct appeal, if
taken, and the review and appeal shall be consolidated for
consideration. The court shall render its decision on legal errors
enumerated, the factual substantiation of the verdict, and the
validity of the sentence.