Saturday, 14 June 2008

Questions persist as executions resume nationwide

Associated Press - May 26, 2008 3:45 PM ET

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - As Oklahoma prepares to resume lethal injections next month, some members of the defense bar are worried about flaws in the system that sends condemned men to their deaths.

They fear the ineffective lawyers, overzealous prosecutors and shoddy evidence that have already resulted in death row exonerations across the country could some day lead to the execution of an innocent man.

According to the Death Penalty Information Center, 129 people have walked off death rows since 1973 in 26 states after evidence of their wrongful convictions, according to the Death Penalty Information Center. A Supreme Court ruling in April in favor of the lethal injection process ended a 9-month hiatus on executions.

Florida leads all states with 22 exonerations, followed by 18 in Illinois. Oklahoma is 1 of 5 states in which eight inmates have been freed from death row.

Terry Lyn Short's June 17th execution is the next lethal injection planned in Oklahoma. He is set to die for a firebombing that killed a Japanese exchange student, Ken Yamamoto.

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