Ohio set to execute Billy Slagle this week despite a prosecutor’s request for clemency
7 Comments · Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Billy Slagle is going to die on Aug. 7.
The Ohio Parole Board recommended against granting Slagle clemency on
July 16, and Gov. John Kasich last week denied Slagle’s request to have
his death sentence commuted to life in prison.
by German Lopez
Human services funding falls short, state to kill murderer, longshot mayoral candidates rage
Although this year’s cuts are being undone, City Hall has been cutting resources
to the homeless, long-term unemployed, crime victims and casualties of
domestic abuse since 2004. Aid to those groups is part of human services
funding, which is supposed to receive 1.5 percent of the operating
budget but currently gets a quarter of that at 0.4 percent. To explain
the decade of cuts, the city administration typically points to citizen
surveys and meetings conducted as part of the priority-driven budgeting
process. But a CityBeat analysis of the demographics of the process found they were skewed in favor of the wealthiest
Cincinnatians and against low-income people, who benefit the most from
human services. For the agencies that receive funding, the history of cuts is even
more worrying as Cincinnati prepares for more budget gaps in the next
The state of Ohio will execute Billy Slagle on Aug. 7,
even though the prosecutor’s office behind the charges asked the Ohio
Parole Board to grant him clemency. The parole board denied the request,
and Gov. John Kasich last week declined to commute the sentence to life
in prison. Slagle was convicted in 1988 of murdering a 40-year-old
woman in a gruesome stabbing. His family says he was in an alcohol- and
drug-fueled haze at the time and has a history of problems at home, including
domestic abuse, that presents extenuating circumstances.
Two longshot mayoral candidates are really upset
about Cincinnati’s primary system: Independent Sandra “Queen” Noble
sent an F-bomb-laden email to debate organizers, and Libertarian Jim
Berns quit the race. Under the current primary system, multiple mayoral
candidates are allowed to run. But come Sept. 10, voters will select the
top two contenders in a primary. Those frontrunners will then face off
in a final election on Nov. 5 to pick who will take over City Hall on
Dec. 1. Noble and Berns claim the current system favors the two
frontrunners — Democrats Roxanne Qualls and John Cranley — by helping
them get the most exposure through televised debates after the primary
Commentaries:• “GOP Continues Playing Politics with Ohioans’ Health”• “Is Ohio’s New License Plate the Worst or Just Bad?”
Cranley has raised more money
than Qualls in the mayoral race, according to campaign finance reports
filed yesterday. Cranley has raised about $472,000, compared to $348,000
for Qualls. Cranley also has about $264,000 in the bank, while the
Qualls campaign has about $192,000 in hand.
Undocumented immigrants who were brought into the country as children will be eligible for in-state tuition
at Ohio public colleges, following a decision from the Ohio Board of
Regents. The change will save the students thousands of dollars at the
state’s public schools, which were charging exorbitant out-of-state and
international rates before. The undocumented immigrants qualify for
legal benefits because of an executive order signed by President Barack Obama earlier in the year
that prevents the federal government from prosecuting them. The order
falls short of actual legalization on the books, but it grants many benefits under state and federal law.
In quite possibly the worst news ever, Rob Lowe and Rashida Jones announced they’re leaving “Parks and Recreation” after the 13th episode of the upcoming season.
German scientists have proposed a new strategy for combating climate change: turn coastal deserts into forests.
By science, ostriches can now fly:
0 Comments · Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Ohio’s death penalty came under scrutiny
July 19, when the Ohio Supreme Court’s Death Penalty Task Force heard
presentations from three subcommittees on strategies to make sure death
penalty sentencing in Ohio is transparent and fair.
How Ohio death row inmate Abdul Awkal was saved from execution
0 Comments · Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Ohio death row inmate Abdul Awkal wasn’t
trying to avoid his execution. He just wanted his meals prepared
according to his Muslim faith.
0 Comments · Wednesday, June 6, 2012
If the 1985 film Pee Wee’s Big Adventure taught us anything, it’s that rich people think they can have whatever they want
when someone loves an object enough, he or she will do anything to keep
it. That’s kind of what’s going on over at Music Hall these days.
by Danny Cross
Hamilton County has been killing people more often than Ohio counties of similar size, despite actually asking for the death penalty less often. Today's Enquirer takes a look at the growing opposition to the death
penalty in other states and recent legislation and task forces aimed
at either studying its effectiveness or stopping the practice
altogether. Prosecutor Joe Deters says he's going to kill all the people who deserve it because the law is still the law.
Would you like to pay tolls or higher
gas taxes in order to have a new Brent Spence Bridge? No? Then you're
like a majority of people who take the time to respond to Enquirer polls.
City Manager Milton Dohoney plans to
ask City Council to raise the property tax rate in response to a
projected $33 million 2013 deficit that everyone knows was coming.
The Community Press on the East Side
says Norfolk Southern is willing to consider selling the Wasson Way
right of way that some would like to see turned into a bike trail.
CityBeat in March found the proposed trail to have support among cycling enthusiasts but some resistance from
light rail supporters.
President Obama hooked up an
11-year-old kid with a note excusing him from class on Friday.
“He says, ‘Do you want me to write
an excuse note? What’s your teacher’s name?” Sullivan told ABC.
“And I say, Mr. Ackerman. And he writes, ‘Please excuse Tyler. He
was with me. Barack Obama, the president.'"
Fortune magazine has taken exception to
Mitt Romney's recent criticism of Solyndra, the solar panel
company that went out of business despite a $500 million Department
of Energy loan.
So last Thursday Romney held a surprise
press conference at Solyndra's shuttered headquarters. During his
prepared statement, Romney said:
"An independent inspector general
looked at this investment and concluded that the Administration had
steered money to friends and family and campaign contributors."
Romney then repeated the claim later in
the press conference.
Small problem: No inspector
general ever "concluded" such a thing, at least not based
on any written reports or public statements.
Wisconsin Gov./Union Crusher Scott
Walker holds a slight lead over his Democratic challenger, Milwaukee
Mayor Tom Barrett, according to a recent poll.
George Zimmerman is back in jail after
what his attorney is calling a misunderstanding over telling a judge
that he had limited money even though a website set up to fund his
legal defense raised more than $135,000.
Legal issues will be involved in New
York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's attempt to ban giant sodas. Jason Alexander has released a lengthy and quite thoughtful apology for referring to the sport of cricket as "a bit gay" during a recent appearance on The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson.
Why do people on the West Coast get to
see all the cool stuff that happens in space? First the eclipse and
now the Transit of Venus, when Venus will cross paths between the sun
and earth. Next time it will happen is 2117. And Australia got to see
a partial lunar eclipse the other day, too.
by Kevin Osborne
Connecticut is 17th to abolish capital punishment
Connecticut will soon join the list of states that have ended
the use of capital punishment.
In an 86-63 vote, legislators in Connecticut’s House of
Representatives passed the bill Wednesday night. The state Senate approved the
measure April 5, in a 20-16 vote.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, a
Democrat, has indicated he will sign the bill when it reaches his desk,
probably sometime this week. A similar bill was vetoed by then-Gov. Jodi Rell,
a Republican, in 2009.
Connecticut’s law is
prospective in nature, and won’t affect the sentences of the 11 people
currently on the state’s death row.
In the last five years, New
Jersey, New Mexico, New York and Illinois have repealed the death penalty,
according to CNN. California voters will decide the issue in November.
Other states that have
abolished capital punishment are Alaska, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts,
Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia and
Meanwhile, a man who spent 21 years on Ohio’s death row until he was
exonerated in 2010 will speak tonight at a forum in Clifton.
will discuss his experience and
why he believes the death penalty should be scrapped at 6:30 p.m. at the St.
Monica-St. George Parish Newman Center, located at 328 W. McMillan St. D’Ambrosio
will be joined by the Rev. Neil Kookoothe, a Roman Catholic priest who worked
to get him released.
D’Ambrosio was wrongfully
convicted of the 1988 murder of Anthony Klann in Cleveland. Cuyahoga County
prosecutors withheld 10 pieces of evidence that would have exonerated
D’Ambrosio at his trial and implicated another suspect in the crime, a judge
ruled in March 2010.
D’Ambrosio is the
140th Death Row exoneration in the United States since 1973 and the sixth
This week’s Porkopolis column
looks at a report from Amnesty International about the use of capital
punishment throughout the world, and how the United States is one of the only
industrialized nations that still condones the practice.
0 Comments · Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Ohio can now resume carrying out
executions for the first time since November 2011, after a ruling last
week from U.S. District Judge Gregory Frost of Newark. In January, Frost halted the Ohio
execution of condemned murderer Charles Lorraine in light of several
slip-ups by the state in following its own execution protocol.
by Hannah McCartney
Posted In: Courts
at 08:53 AM | Permalink
Judge rules state again capable of carrying out death penalty
Ohio can now resume carrying out executions for the first time since November 2011, after a ruling Wednesday from U.S. District Judge Gregory Frost of Newark. In January, Frost halted the Ohio execution of condemned murderer Charles Lorraine in light of several slip-ups by the state in following its own execution protocol. On Feb. 8, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Frost’s decision, ruling that the number of documented failures to follow procedure were enough to place an official moratorium on executions. The failures to follow protocol were reportedly mostly minor paperwork technicalities, including not properly documenting that an inmate’s medical files were reviewed and switching the official whose job it was to announce the start and finish times of the lethal injection. The state argued that the errors were minor, and didn’t legitimately affect the state’s ability to carry out humane executions. Frost, however, expressed frustration at the state’s failure to follow codes it had set itself. "Ohio has been in a dubious cycle of defending often indefensible conduct, subsequently reforming its protocol when called on that conduct, and then failing to follow through on its own reforms," Frost wrote in his January ruling. Frost's ruling means that the state will move forward with the April 18 execution of Mark Wiles, who was found guilty for stabbing a 15-year-old boy to death in1985. Frost recently denied Wiles' request for a stay of execution. Although his ruling sided with the state, Frost seemed somewhat wary of the state's promises to reform. Since the moratorium, the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction has allegedly scrutinized its procedural policies and implemented a new "Incident Command System," which sounds like an initiative for ORDC Director Gary Mohr to more closely micromanage the processes during state executions.
"This court is therefore willing to trust Ohio just enough to permit
the scheduled execution," Frost wrote regarding his rejection of Wiles' stay of execution. "The court reaches this
conclusion with some trepidation given Ohio's history of telling this
court what (they) think they need to say in order to conduct executions
and then not following through on promised reforms." To date, Ohio has executed 386 convicted murderers. Click here for a schedule of upcoming executions in Ohio.
Andrew Welsh-Huggins investigates why Ohio is one of the busiest death penalty states
0 Comments · Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Offhand, what would you say Ohio has in common with the state of Texas? A propensity to execute its prisoners, that's what. In his recently released book 'No Winners Here Tonight,' Columbus-based Associated Press reporter Andrew Welsh-Huggins says that in 1958 four states accounted for half the 48 U.S. executions (Ohio, Texas, California, Georgia), and by 2000 Ohio was second only to Texas in the number of people put to death each year.