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March 28, 2007

Ohio Gov grants reprieve for more DNA testing

As detailed in this Columbus Dispatch article, an Ohio death row defendant, whom many believe may be innocent, has received yet another reprieve to allow additional DNA testing:

Gov. Ted Strickland today granted another reprieve for convicted killer John G. Spirko Jr., pushing his execution date until Sept. 18.  It was the sixth reprieve granted to Spirko to allow time for additional DNA testing related to the 1982 kidnapping and murder of Betty Jane Mottinger, 48, postmaster at Elgin in northwest Ohio.

Attorney General Marc Dann asked Strickland to delay the execution which had been set for April 17.  Spirko, 60, was originally set for lethal injection on Sept. 19, 2005, but his defense attorneys repeatedly requested additional DNA testing.  They claim he is an innocent man convicted based solely on circumstantial and misleading evidence.

Ohio Death Penalty Information has a lot more on this case (and other interesting new posts).

March 28, 2007 at 07:03 AM | Permalink

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Comments

The Va. Governor yesterday vetoed the death penalty expansion bills, including the triggerman repeal.

Posted by: rothmatisseko | Mar 28, 2007 12:50:24 PM

Woohoo.... they've only tested roughly 150 items for DNA and had inconclusive results thus far... surely a 6th reprieve must have been absolutely necessary. Are we to the point where every piece of evidence introduced by the State is going to have to have DNA testing run on it before an execution can be carried out?

Posted by: LonesomeClerk | Mar 29, 2007 12:04:30 PM

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