Ohio's Death Penalty Needs A Time-Out

February 2, 2012

Tyrone Noling
Tyrone Noling

Following the news of the nation’s 140th death row exoneration, which was also Ohio’s 6th, comes a story in The Atlantic about another disturbing case in the Buckeye State.  Tyrone Noling remains sentenced to die despite:

  • No physical evidence against him
  • Recanting witnesses who may have been coerced
  • An alternative suspect who seems to never have been thoroughly investigated
  • The state refusing to support a DNA test that might shed light on the accuracy of the conviction.

You know, the usual stuff.

Ohio has 13 executions scheduled, but wrongful death sentences, botched executions like that of Romell Broom which have led the courts to harshly admonish Ohio officials, expressions of concern from a state Supreme Court judge and a former Attorney General (authors of Ohio’s death penalty law), and from a warden who oversaw 33 executions, all suggest that the state could use a time-out.

A task force is currently studying how Ohio administers capital punishment. Shouldn’t Ohio, at the very least, suspend executions while this study is underway?  If you think so, you should let Ohio Governor John Kasich know.