Donations to the Community of Sant'Egidio are tax deductible
under current regulations

Also this year it can target the 5x1000 to the Community of Sant'Egidio
Write the number 80191770587 in the tax return

Andrea Riccardi: on the web

Andrea Riccardi: on social networks

Andrea Riccardi: press review

change language
you are in: no death penalty - news newslettercontact uslink

Support The Community

September 3 2010 | UNITED STATES


Kevin Keith was spared the death penalty by Governor

printable version


Convicted killer claiming innocence is spared death penalty in Ohio

By Bill Mears, CNN Supreme Court Producer

Kevin Keith was spared the death penalty Thursday by Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland.


          Kevin Keith was scheduled to die by lethal injection in two weeks

          Ohio's governor changed the sentence to life in prison without parole for three killings

          The governor cites "legitimate questions" about evidence in the case

          But the governor adds he thinks it is "far more likely" than not that Keith committed the killings

(CNN) -- An Ohio death row inmate who has repeatedly claimed his innocence was spared execution, after the state's governor Thursday noted "legitimate questions" about evidence used to convict the man.

Kevin Keith for now will spend the rest of his life in prison without parole. His legal appeals will continue, with lawyers claiming newly discovered evidence and discredited eyewitness testimony will ultimately exonerate him.

Keith was convicted of the 1994 killings of three females, including a child, in an apartment in Bucyrus, 60 miles north of Columbus. He was scheduled to die by lethal injection September 15, and had exhausted most of his federal and state court appeals. Gov. Ted Strickland, a Democrat, issued his commutation this week after a number of civil liberties and innocence groups urged he step in to prevent a possibly innocent man from being executed by the state.

"Clearly, the careful exercise of a governor's executive clemency authority is appropriate in a case like this one, given the real and unanswered questions surrounding the murders for which Mr. Keith was convicted," said Strickland in a statement. "Mr. Keith still has appellate legal proceedings pending which, in theory, could ultimately result in his conviction being overturned altogether.

The governor added, however, that he believes "it is far more likely that Mr. Keith committed these murders than it is likely that he did not." Strickland urged the courts to give a "full, fair analysis" of the issues raised in the appeal. He ignored the recommendations of the state's parole board, which last month unanimously recommended against clemency.

Keith's lawyers applauded the governor's decision, but promised to continue the fight to clear the inmate.

"Mr. Keith remains incarcerated for a crime he did not commit, and that crime remains unsolved," said a statement from his five-person legal team. "The commutation to a life sentence does not lessen the need for justice to prevail."

Prosecutors said the 46-year-old Keith had maliciously sprayed a home with gunfire, that left a 4-year-old dead, along with her mother and aunt. Three others were wounded but survived, including a man who later testified against the main suspect. At trial, the state argued one of the victims was the brother of an undercover police informant who had implicated Keith as a drug dealer.

But Keith's public defenders point to at least one other suspect, and say a detective in the case lied on the stand about how a survivor of the shooting identified Keith. His defense team also later presented alibi witnesses.

Calls to the Crawford County prosecuting attorney's office were not immediately returned.

The issue of "actual innocence" and the rights of prisoners to challenge their sentences years after a trial will be argued next month at the U.S. Supreme Court. A Texas death row inmate wants DNA testing from evidence that had not been analyzed at the time of his trial, to try to prove he did not commit the crime.

The Innocence Project, a New York-based legal clinic said 258 people have been exonerated through DNA testing and new evidence being uncovered, with their convictions being tossed out. Many defense attorneys have urged the courts to make it easier for inmates-- especially those facing execution-- to go to court to press for a new look at these innocence claims, including more sophisticated DNA testing of old evidence.

"It's a win-win for the justice system. If he turns out to be guilty, we have the certainty of that fact with objective DNA science prior to the time that we carry out the ultimate punishment," said Nina Morrison, a staff attorney with the Innocence Project. "And if he's not guilty, obviously that's something that we, and surely the state, would want to know prior to the time that an irrevocable penalty of execution is carried out. "

February 23 2018

Minutes before execution, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott commutes the sentence of Thomas Whitaker!

Gov. Greg Abbott spared the life of a death row inmate less than an hour before his scheduled execution
February 23 2018

The state of Florida carried out the execution of Branch on Thursday evening at the Florida State Prison in Raiford

Branch, who was on death row for nearly 25 years, was pronounced dead of a lethal injection at 6:05 p.m. Central Standard Time
November 20 2017

Plans shaping up for this year’s Cities for Life, Cities Against the Death Penalty

Family members of murder victims, death row exonerees, death penalty attorneys, law professors, and religious leaders will join Floridians to celebrate hold vigil to end the death penalty in the State of Florida
November 2 2017
article by Andrea Riccardi

Death Penalty: Horror or Injustice

(Famiglia cristiana) translated in English
October 27 2017

Three bishops reiterate their opposition to the death penalty following resolution of court case

Barbara D. King is the Director of Communications for the diocese of Savannah
October 27 2017

Guatemala high court abolishes death penalty in civil cases

all related news

November 28 2016

High court to examine mental disability, death penalty issue
November 12 2016

Si rafforza la pena di morte negli Stati Uniti
November 11 2016

Al liceo classico “Socrate” di Bari, conferenza “Non c’è giustizia senza vita”
October 24 2016
New York Times

The Death Penalty, Nearing Its End
June 4 2016
The Washington Post

Meet the red-state conservatives fighting to abolish the death penalty
all press-related

Video promo Cities for Life 2015

83 visits

240 visits

55 visits

64 visits

71 visits
all the related media