"Flaws in law, judicial questions and costs of capital cases reinforce the moral imperative to end capital punishment," is the Cleveland Plain Dealer editorial.
A federal judge has opened the door for Ohio to resume executions. That doesn't mean the state has to -- or should -- begin executing prisoners again.
In fact, this would be the ideal time for Ohio to repeal its capital punishment statute, as this page long has advocated.
One of the Ohio law's authors, current state Supreme Court Justice Paul Pfeifer, has become a very public critic of how the death penalty is applied.
Others who have expressed reservations about capital punishment include former state prisons director Terry Collins, who oversaw 33 executions, and former Ohio Attorney General James Petro, who helped Pfeifer draft the statute when they were in the General Assembly and who has co-authored a book about wrongful convictions. Petro, for one, is not yet ready to say that Ohio should abolish the death penalty.
Ohio's conduct of executions has faced sharp scrutiny since 2009, when executioners tried for almost two hours to insert a needle into the veins of Romell Broom before then-Gov. Ted Strickland halted the proceedings. Broom remains on death row.
Prison is where Broom belongs until natural death claims him. Wiles, too. This is no defense of the horrors they committed. But taking their lives in the name of justice is wrong.
The AP posts, "Condemned Ohio inmate won't appeal execution," by Andrew Welsh-Huggins, via the Newark Advocate.
A condemned inmate scheduled to die next week for killing a teenager during a 1985 farmhouse robbery has decided not to appeal a judge's order allowing the execution, his attorney said Friday.
If put to death, 49-year-old Mark Wiles would be the first inmate executed in Ohio in six months following legal fights over the state's lethal injection policies.
Wiles attorney Allen Bohnert told The Associated Press that Wiles was not appealing but declined to say why or comment further.
Wiles' decision came two days after Gov. John Kasich refused to spare him, a decision that upheld the Ohio Parole Board's ruling to deny Wiles clemency.
Attorneys who have represented Wiles before the Ohio Parole Board called the state's clemency system arbitrary and unpredictable and said Wiles was not the "worst of the worst" for whom capital punishment was designed.
The Youngstown Vindicator editorial is, "Get executions back on track for Portage, Trumbull killers."
Two noteworthy developments this week in Connecticut and Ohio reinforce the highly contentious debate over the death penalty.
In Connecticut, the state Legislature approved an outright abolition of capital punishment, making The Constitution State the 17th in the nation to outlaw the death penalty. In Ohio, Gov. John Kasich denied clemency for a Portage County murderer after a federal judge ended a five-month moratorium on executions over legal complaints that Ohio had not followed its own lethal-injection protocol properly.
In Connecticut, we recognize the abolition of capital punishment as a predictable outcome for that region: Only one state in the entire Northeast — New Hampshire — continues to respect the logic behind the death penalty and keeps it on the books.
In Ohio, we welcome the developments as a sign that the state has learned from its past transgressions in the use of lethal injection and as a harbinger that this state will continue to maintain the death penalty for the worst of the worst of cold-blooded murderers.
Earlier coverage from Ohio begins at the link.