The Oregon Supreme Court ruling in Haugen v. Kitzhaber is available in Adobe .pdf format.
The Oregonian posts, "Oregon Supreme Court denies death row inmate Gary Haugen's bid for execution," by Helen Jung.
Oregon death row inmate Gary Haugen cannot legally force Gov. John Kitzhaber to carry out his execution, the Oregon Supreme Court decided Thursday.
Rather, the governor has the legal authority to delay the twice-conicted killer's execution, the court said, despite the inmate's insistence that he be put to death.
The court's decision reverses a trial court judge's decision last August that sided with arguments from Haugen and his attorney Harrison Latto that Haugen must accept the governor's reprieve for it to be valid.
"Oregon court upholds governor's execution delay," is AP coverage filed by Jonathan J. Cooper. It's via the Evening Sun.
Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber can delay the lethal injection of a death-row inmate who wants to waive his appeals and speed his execution, the state's highest court ruled Thursday.
The Oregon Supreme Court said Kitzhaber did not overstep his power when he granted a reprieve delaying the death sentence of Gary Haugen, who was convicted of two murders.
Kitzhaber opposes the death penalty and intervened weeks before Haugen was scheduled to be executed in 2011. The governor said he refused to allow an execution under a state death-penalty system he views as broken.
Haugen challenged Kitzhaber's clemency, saying the reprieve was invalid because Haugen refused to accept it. He also argued that it wasn't actually a reprieve but rather an illegal attempt by the governor to nullify a law he didn't like. The justices rejected both arguments.
The governor argued that his clemency power is absolute, and nobody—certainly not an inmate on death row—can prevent him from doing what he believes to be in the state's best interest.
Kitzhaber has urged a statewide vote on abolishing the death penalty, although the Legislature has shown little interest in putting it on the ballot in 2014.
Related posts are in the clemency category index.