There is news coverage on two recent Ohio developments.
"Billy Slagle suicide prompts call for execution moratorium," is Alan Johnson's post at the Columbus Dispatch Daily Briefing blog.
The Ohioans to Stop Executions death penalty abolition group today urged Gov. John Kasich to issue a moratorium on executions "to stop the futile and ineffective system of death in Ohio."
Revelations about the case of Billy Slagle, who committed suicide on Death Row on Sunday, show the death penalty is a "broken, arcane system that continues to allow unconscionable mistakes by lawyers involved," said the group chaired by the Rev. Will H. Mebane.
The organization said Kasich granted clemency to convicted killer John Eley as a result of a previous plea deal. Eley is now serving life without the possibiity of parole.
However, in Slagle's case, Kasich was unaware of the plea deal until it was too late to act.
Earlier coverage of Billy Slagle's case and suicide begins at the link.
The Los Angeles Times reports on the case of Ronald Post, "Death of obese Ohio inmate escalates death penalty debate," by Benjamin Mueller.
The details of this unusual capital case are being scrutinized at a critical time: A joint task force established by the state bar association and the Ohio Supreme Court is examining the death penalty and has already begun proposing reforms.
Critics of the current system say Post was a symbol of the inequities that can cement an inmate’s death sentence.
“It’s another example of the way in which the death penalty system isn’t working,” said Diann Rust-Tierney, executive director of the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. “It highlights the question of whether people’s resources and representation determine the outcome of capital cases.”
Post, whose death was called “expected” by a state prisons spokeswoman, was scheduled to be executed on Jan. 16, 2013. Kasich granted him clemency in December on the grounds that his defense had been botched. Experts say his lawyers failed to introduce mitigating evidence, let Post take a polygraph test with a biased contractor, and had him plead no contest without negotiating with prosecutors to rule out the death penalty.
Earlier coverage of Ronald Post's case begins at the link.
Also available from Ohio, coverage of the Joint Task Force meetings.