U.S. Supreme Court blocks Glossip execution


By John Dobberstein, Editor

The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked Oklahoma from executing death row inmate Richard Glossip after the state’s attorney general said the case needed reexamination.

Glossip had been scheduled to be put to death on May 18 despite statements by Oklahoma Attorney General Gentner Drummond that Glossip didn’t receive a fair trial.

An Oklahoma appeals court upheld Glossip’s conviction, and a vote by Oklahoma’s pardon and parole board to grant clemency to Glossip ended in a 2-2 deadlock. The Supreme Court opted to stop the execution while justices review the case.

“(Glossip) will clearly suffer irreparable harm if he were executed despite the State’s conclusion that the conviction can no longer be supported,” said the high court’s order. “Further, given its confession of error, the State will not suffer any harm through the grant of a stay.

“Finally, the public interest is clearly served by not executing a man after the State has concluded that the conviction cannot be sustained. Therefore, the balance of equities strongly favors a stay of execution in this case.”

Drummond said his office is “very grateful” to the Supreme Court for the stay. “I will continue working to ensure justice prevails in this important case.”

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