FEATURED POST

In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

Image
To cope with his dread, John Kitzhaber opened his leather-bound journal and began to write.
It was a little past 9 on the morning of Nov. 22, 2011. Gary Haugen had dropped his appeals. A Marion County judge had signed the murderer's death warrant, leaving Kitzhaber, a former emergency room doctor, to decide Haugen's fate. The 49-year-old would soon die by lethal injection if the governor didn't intervene.
Kitzhaber was exhausted, having been unable to sleep the night before, but he needed to call the families of Haugen's victims.
"I know my decision will delay the closure they need and deserve," he wrote.
The son of University of Oregon English professors, Kitzhaber began writing each day in his journal in the early 1970s. The practice helped him organize his thoughts and, on that particular morning, gather his courage.
Kitzhaber first dialed the widow of David Polin, an inmate Haugen beat and stabbed to death in 2003 while already serving a life sentence fo…

Death sentence for Craigslist killer upheld by Ohio Supreme Court

Richard Beasley
The Ohio Supreme Court on Friday upheld the death sentence of Richard Beasley, who posted fake job offers on Craigslist to lure men for him to rob and kill.

Beasley, 58, teamed up with a teenager to use the free classified ad website to put up postings promising jobs on a southeastern Ohio farm. He killed Ralph Geiger, David Pauley and Timothy Kern. He also shot Scott Davis, who survived.

A Summit County judge sentenced him to death in 2013.

The Ohio Supreme Court voted 7-0 that the evidence presented at trial was enough for a jury to convict him and that any errors he alleged either were not errors or were harmless.

The justices also voted 6-1 that the death sentence was appropriate. Then-Justice Bill O'Neill was the lone dissenter, relying on a dissent he wrote in a previous case that said the death penalty is unconstitutional.

"Without question, the aggravating circumstances in this case, Beasley's murder of 3 individuals as part of a single course of conduct, outweigh the mitigating factors beyond a reasonable doubt," Chief Justice Maureen O'Connor wrote for the majority.

Despite his death sentences being upheld, the Ohio Supreme Court sent Beasley's case back to Summit County, ruling the judge did not take the proper steps when sentencing Beasley for his noncapital convictions.

Donald Gallick, Beasley's attorney, acknowledged that fighting death penalty cases in Ohio is difficult. Even designating the re-sentencing as a small victory would be "a bit of an overstatement," he said.

He said Beasley will likely ask the U.S. Supreme Court to review his case.

Brogan Rafferty, Beasley's co-defendant who was 16 years old at the time of the killings, is serving life in prison.

Source: cleveland.com, February 10, 2018


⚑ | Report an error, an omission, a typo; suggest a story or a new angle to an existing story; submit a piece, a comment; recommend a resource; contact the webmaster, contact us: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com.


Opposed to Capital Punishment? Help us keep this blog up and running! DONATE!



"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

Most Viewed (Last 7 Days)

New Hampshire: More than 50,000 anti-death penalty signatures delivered to Sununu

Texas: The accused Santa Fe shooter will never get the death penalty. Here’s why.

Post Mortem – the execution of Edward Earl Johnson

Malaysian court sentences Australian grandmother to death by hanging

Convicted killer from infamous “Texas 7” prison escape gets execution date

Ohio: Lawyers seek review of death sentence for 23-year-old Clayton man

Texas man on death row for decapitating 3 kids loses appeal

Amnesty International Once Again Highlights Shocking Justice System in Iran

In the crosshairs of conscience: John Kitzhaber's death penalty reckoning

Ohio man with execution set for July 18 blames killing on ‘homosexual panic’