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Demand Governor Kasich Stop Further Executions in Ohio

Update: On February 8th Governor Kasich issued a eight-month reprieve for Raymond Tibbetts who was scheduled to be executed on February 13th. The decision came after he received a letter in support of clemency from one of the jurors from Raymond Tibbetts 1998 trial. A man who served as a juror at Raymond Tibbetts’s trial wrote a detailed letter to the Governor on January 30, 2018 after reviewing the mitigating evidence which had been seen by the parole board but not the jury. The juror expressed his deep concerns about the trial in light of this information and concluded that “based on what I know today I would not have recommend the death penalty.” In an Ohio capitol case, a jury must be unanimous for the death penalty for that to be the outcome.

It has been three and a half years since the botched execution of Dennis McGuire took place in Ohio on January 16, 2014. Since that time, three innocent men have been released from death row in Ohio after their wrongful convictions were finally exposed. Ohio has freed a total of nine innocent men from death row, but we have no idea how many more still sit on death row. One estimate by the National Academy of Sciences suggests that as many as 4% of death row prisoners could be innocent.

Despite these unsettling developments, Ohio has scheduled 27 new execution dates through 2022, beginning with Ronald Phillips, who was executed on July 26, 2017. With the state’s history of wrongful convictions and botched executions, Ohio must recognize that the death penalty is broken beyond repair. Please tell Governor Kasich to stop these executions.