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No Second Chances: What to Do After a Botched Execution

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Ohio tried and failed to execute Alva Campbell. The state shouldn't get a second chance.
The pathos and problems of America's death penalty were vividly on display yesterday when Ohio tried and failed to execute Alva Campbell. Immediately after its failure Gov. John Kasich set June 5, 2019, as a new execution date.
This plan for a second execution reveals a glaring inadequacy in the legal standards governing botched executions in the United States.
Campbell was tried and sentenced to die for murdering 18-year-old Charles Dials during a carjacking in 1997. After Campbell exhausted his legal appeals, he was denied clemency by the state parole board and the governor.
By the time the state got around to executing Campbell, he was far from the dangerous criminal of 20 years ago. As is the case with many of America's death-row inmates, the passage of time had inflicted its own punishments.
The inmate Ohio strapped onto the gurney was a 69-year-old man afflicted with serious ailm…

Missouri Supreme Court refuses to hear inmate's innocence claims despite DNA testing and only eyewitness recanting

ST. LOUIS, Mo. - A man serving a life sentence is denied an appeal hearing by Missouri’s Supreme Court, despite DNA tests proving the hair used at trial wasn’t his and the only eyewitness recanting her testimony.

As 41 Action News first reported last year, Rodney Lincoln appealed his 1982 murder conviction to Missouri’s Court of Appeals but was denied.

The ruling stated innocence claims should only be allowed in death row cases.

The Missouri Supreme Court upheld that ruling this week by refusing to hear Lincoln’s case.

“There's no way a jury would’ve convicted Rodney if it had been fully informed,” said Sean O’Brien, UMKC Law Professor who helped work on Lincoln’s case.

DNA testing later showed the hair presented at trial turned out to not be Lincoln’s, but he’s still in prison 35 years later.

“Zero evidence tying him to the crime and the evidence they used at trial we’ve discovered that it was completely tainted with improper procedures,” O’Brien told 41 Action News.

O’Brien said one of those improper procedures is the police lineup of Lincoln they showed the murder victim’s seven year old daughter.

At the time, she had told police she saw the murderer and he had short hair, but all the men in the lineup had long hair except for Lincoln.

“This poor girl was manipulated into picking a picture of Rodney,” O’Brien said about the victim’s daughter who later recanted her testimony as an adult.

The Midwest Innocence Project is representing Lincoln for free and has tried to get his appeals heard for years.

Now that the Missouri Supreme Court has denied his appeal request, Lincoln’s last hope in the state is to either get paroled or a pardon from Governor Eric Greitens.

Source: kshb.com, June 1, 2017


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