Innocent on Death Row? New Evidence Casts Doubt on Convictions

Rodney Reed’s death sentence was suspended. But researchers say other current cases raise similar doubt about the guilt of the accused.
The number of executions in the United States remains close to nearly a three-decade low. And yet the decline has not prevented what those who closely track the death penalty see as a disturbing trend: a significant number of cases in which prisoners are being put to death, or whose execution dates are near, despite questions about their guilt.
Rodney Reed, who came within days of execution in Texas before an appeals court suspended his death sentence on Friday, has been the most high-profile recent example, receiving support from Texas lawmakers of both parties and celebrities like Rihanna and Kim Kardashian West, who urged a new examination of the evidence.
Mr. Reed has long maintained that he did not commit the 1996 murder for which he was convicted. And in recent months, new witnesses came forward pointing toward another possible suspect: the dead…

Malaysian on Singapore death row gets stay of execution in final hour

Sarawakian Kho Jabing
Sarawakian Kho Jabing
Sarawakian Kho Jabing has received a stay of execution on a death sentence less than 24 hours before he was scheduled to be hanged in Singapore, rights advocacy group We Believe in Second Chances co-founder Kirsten Han said today.

Jabing's lawyer had filed a criminal motion on Wednesday at the Singapore Court of Appeal to request a remittance of his case.

The court rule granted a stay of execution early Thursday, but have yet to announce the dates for his case to be mentioned, Han told The Malaysian Insider in a phone interview shortly after the ruling was made.

"We still don't know when the next hearing will be... but it's just great news that the sentencing will not be carried out as scheduled tomorrow," Han said.

However, she said there was yet work to be done as the court decision merely meant that lawyers and rights groups "have only delayed, not halted the execution".

"We will continue to advocate as much as we can for him to be granted clemency."

Jabing, 31, was convicted of murder in 2010 and was due to be hanged tomorrow morning after exhausting all legal avenues for appeal.

His sister Jumai, who has been in Singapore with their 54-year-old mother, said she was "speechless with joy" when she received news of the stay of execution earlier today.

"I couldn't sleep the whole night. I was just praying and praying for a miracle," she told The Malaysian Insider.

"And this morning, when I heard the news, I'm just speechless with joy."

She thanked the Singaporean government and rights groups that had helped appeal for Jabing's death sentence to be commuted.

"My mother is so happy, she is weeping right now"

She said she was looking forward to meeting Jabing in the afternoon to share the good news.

In an immediate response to the news of the stay, Amnesty International Malaysia welcomed the court decision, and repeated calls for Jabing's death sentence to be commuted to life imprisonment, or that he be granted clemency.

"We call upon the Malaysian and Singaporean authorities to study the details of Jabing's case, and they will see why we know that the death penalty is not an answer for Jabing, or for any other person on death row," said the organisation's executive director Sharmini Darshni.

Source: The Malaysian Insider, November 5, 2015

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