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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…

Murdered teacher's mother 'relieved' as Qatari court upholds death sentence

Doha, Qatar
The mother of a British primary school teacher murdered in Qatar 4 years ago has spoken of her relief after the killer had his death sentence upheld.

Badr Hashim Khamis Abdullah Al-Jabar was found guilty by a court in Doha in 2014 of killing Lauren Patterson, 24, in the Gulf state a year earlier.

His accomplice Muhammad Abdullah Hassan Abdul Aziz was jailed for 3 years for reportedly helping burn the body of the Briton, originally from Chislehurst, in south-east London.

Miss Patterson had been working at the Newton British School in the Qatari capital.

She disappeared in Doha on October 12, 2013. Local media reported at the time that she was last seen outside the city's 5-star La Cigale hotel.

On Sunday, an appeal court in Qatar upheld the death penalty, a spokesman at the Foreign Office said.

In a statement on Wednesday, her mother Alison said the family remained devastated but felt justice had been done.

She said: "Following Sunday's court hearing, I am feeling very emotional but relieved that the trial is now over.

"The family remain devastated by the senseless and tragic events of October 2013, but due to the thoroughness of the judicial process in Qatar we now feel that justice has thankfully prevailed for Lauren.

"I would like to thank all those who have supported me during this difficult process and request that our family's privacy be respected at this time."

Source: aol.co.uk, May 4, 2017

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