Reprieve delivers justice and saves lives, from death row to Guantánamo Bay.
In a small, chic art gallery in the French Quarter of New Orleans, three men stood on Saturday evening in front of a well-dressed, well-heeled crowd and told their stories.
Greg Bright, tall, chiseled and imposing, Albert Burrell who with his cowboy hat, bolo tie and syrup-thick accent seemed to embody Texas and John "JT" Thompson, bespectacled, enthusiastic and articulate.
John Thompson spent fourteen years on death row in Louisiana's infamous Angola penitentiary, for a crime he did not commit, and lived to tell the tale. Now on top of that great achievement he lives for telling his tale ...
Three minutes past midnight on June 18, Ronnie Lee Gardner was declared dead by a doctor. He was executed by a firing squad for a crime committed 25 years ago. His execution was ‘tweeted’ by the Utah Attorney General who gave the final go ahead.
The juxtaposition of these facts is jarring in today’s world. The choice between firing squad and lethal injection is no longer available -- a sign of how societies change and "evolve". Firing squad has been outlawed as a method of execution in all states except Utah (for cases pre-2004) and Okalahoma (if lethal injection and ...
Peter Cantu was sentenced to death in 1994, along with four alleged companions. They were convicted of taking part in the rape and murder of Jennifer Ertman and Elizabeth Pena. Two of the five have already been executed, whilst the two others had their sentences commuted to life after the US Supreme Court barred the death penalty for those who were under 18 at the time of their crimes. When Peter was sentenced to death, he was just 18 years old.
Peter has been on death row for sixteen years. A federal court refused to hear his appeal, despite the ...
Ronnie Lee Gardner, 49, is scheduled to die tonight at midnight in Utah in front of a firing squad. With Mr. Gardner’s face hooded and strapped to a chair, five law enforcement officers will aim .30-caliber rifle and shoot at a target pinned to his heart him from 25 feet away. One of the five riffles will be armed with an “ineffective” round so that no one would know who delivered the fatal shot. Two alternate executioners will be standing by in case one of the original gunmen loses his nerves.
To commemorate this event, Utah Correctional Department has ...
An anonymous gunman appears to relish the prospect of shooting Ronnie Lee Gardner this Friday.
It isn’t easy being part of a firing squad. For one thing, you need a good sense of timing: all five gunmen must fire simultaneously. Then there’s the lingering sense of guilt - although admittedly one of the bullets is traditionally a blank, so no one knows who’s fired the fatal shot.
Yet one anonymous gunman, interviewed in Salt Lake City by a CNN reporter last week, is undeniably enthusiastic about his career. A member of the firing squad which executed John Albert ...
The prison at Guantanamo Bay is still open and a US Task Force report has now provided some public figures, below, on the number and status of prisoners there. Reprieve is still urgently seeking a home for Ahmed Belbacha (right) who has elected to stay in the prison rather than return to persecution in his native Algeria.
240 - files reviewed
126 - total number of prisoners approved for transfer out of the prison
59 - transferred
181- men still at Guantanamo
30 - Yemenis approved for 'conditional detention' - meaning that they can be transferred if one of three specified conditions is met
A Washington, DC federal district court judge has refused to accept the U.S. government’s blanket assertion that Guantánamo prisoner Farhi Saeed bin Mohammed will not be tortured or persecuted if sent to Algeria.
Last fall the same judge, Gladys Kessler, ordered the U.S. to immediately release Farhi after she decided that he was being illegally held at Guantánamo. In her unclassified opinion ordering Farhi’s release, Judge Kessler rejected the U.S. government’s evidence, which consisted almost entirely of statements tortured out of British resident Binyam Mohamed. This served as the first judicial finding in the ...
Ohio Supreme Court Justice Paul E Pfeifer has recently been calling for the creation of a commission to review the cases of 160 death row inmates. The question it would need to ask is simply: does this person need to be on death row?
Now, it is clear that anybody blogging on this website will always ask that question and respond with a negative answer each time. We have as many reasons as there are cases and probably more besides.
But this is not just another abolitionist calling for change, but a state Supreme Court Justice who was one of ...
It has emerged that Libya has executed eighteen people at the beginning of the month for “premeditated murder”. Of the eighteen, ten were from Nigeria and the remaining eight others from Chad and Egypt. Their identities still have not been disclosed and given the existing concerns surrounding Libya’s trial process, there are inevitably doubts as to the fairness of both sentence and execution, regardless of one’s view of the death penalty in principle.
Aside from the continuing concern over fair trials however, these executions highlight particular issues.
First, we should highlight the differing nationalities of the defendants. Foreigners ...
Read the rave review of Reprieve’s comedy night, Laughter/Pain, from The Telegraph’s Tom Chivers.
For a recap of the night, read Spoonfed’s review here.