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Anti-Execution Group Says Task Force Recommendations are a Step Forward

Friday, April 11, 2014 at 5:22 PM

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The state’s death penalty task force has delivered 56 recommendations on changes to the process in Ohio. Those include requiring biological or DNA evidence or a videotaped confession for the death penalty to apply.

The state’s death penalty task force has delivered 56 recommendations on changes to the process in Ohio. Those include requiring biological or DNA evidence or a videotaped confession for the death penalty to apply. Lawmakers would have to approve any changes to the death penalty law.

Kevin Werner is the executive director of Ohioans to Stop Executions. He says if Ohio is going to have capital punishment, it needs to be fair, done properly, and not put innocent people on death row – and that these recommendations move the state in that direction.

“Ultimately I don’t think they’re going to legislate all of these recommendations,” Wener said. “Ultimately I think the law will be appealed, In the short term in the next 5, 10, 15 years, if these recommendations are made, it will at least be fairer.”

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien said that the recommendations could make it so hard to prosecute capital cases that of his colleagues will stop trying, and that under these recommendations, Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh couldn’t have been executed.

But Werner says that’s fearmongering, and that O’Brien left out some key details of the recommendations and the legislature’s role in putting them into law.

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