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

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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…

Iran: Ten hanged over drug, murder, rape charges

Iranian authorities hanged 5 prisoners early Tuesday morning for alleged drug related offenses, but Iranian official sources are silent about these executions.

5 prisoners were reportedly hanged early morning on Tuesday October 25 for alleged drug related offenses. Close sources say the execution sentences may have been carried out at either Karaj Central Prison or nearby Ghezel Hesar Prison.

Iran Human Rights is aware of the names of 3 of the prisoners: Saeed Pourhassan, Mehrshad Kalhori, and Milad Beigdeli. 

These 3 prisoners along with the other 2 were reportedly transferred to solitary confinement cells at Karaj Central Prison on Saturday October 22 in preparation for their execution.

"If they gave us until 2 in the afternoon, we could have stopped Saeed's execution. [Mehrshad Kalhori and Milad Beigdeli] had claimed to authorities that Saeed was guilty, but they wrote a letter retracting their claim stating that their confessions were false and given out of spite. They thought if they gave the names of others to the authorities that they all would be issued light prison sentences. We gave the letter to authorities and pleaded with them to postpone Saeed's execution for several hours. But, they threw the letter away and even attempted to run us over with a car," the brother of Saeed Hassanpour tells Iran Human Rights.

Iranian official sources, including the Judiciary and the media, have been silent about these 5 executions.

4 Executed for Drug Trafficking, Murder


2 prisoners with drug related charges were reportedly hanged at Salmas Prison (West Azerbaijan province, northwestern Iran) and 2 prisoners with murder charges were reportedly hanged at Sepidar Ahwaz Prison (Khuzestan province, western Iran).

According a report by the the state-run news site, Rokna, 2 brothers charged with murder were hanged at Sepidar Ahwaz Prison on the morning of Monday October 24. The report identifies the prisoners as "Hassan" and "Mohsen".

According to the Kurdistan Human Rights Network and information received by Iran Human Rights, 2 prisoners, identified as Bakhtiar Khaledi and Shoresh Mizrapour, were hanged at Salmas Prison on Monday October 24 for alleged drug related offenses.

3 Prisoners Executed in Southern Iran


3 prisoners were reportedly hanged in Shiraz on kidnapping and rape charges. The exact location of the executions is not known at this time.

According to a report by the Judiciary in the Fars province, the executions were carried out on the morning of Monday October 24. The report says one of the prisoners was initially arrested on drug related charges.

The report identifies the prisoners as Reza N., Mohammad A., and Hashem P. Their execution sentences were reportedly issued by branch 4 of the criminal court in Fars and were confirmed by Iran's Supreme Court.

Source: iranhr.net, October 25, 2016

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