Missouri to execute Kevin Johnson despite daughter’s pleas and racist conviction findings

Missouri state plans to execute Kevin Johnson, 37, Tuesday night for the 2005 murder of a police officer despite a special prosecutor hits that “there was racial discrimination that infected this allegation”.

The Missouri Supreme Court on Monday governed against the stay of execution while lower courts considered evidence of bias in sentencing.

“There is simply nothing here that Johnson has not raised (and that this Court has not rejected) before and, even if there were, Johnson offers no basis for raising new or repackaged versions of these oft-dismissed claims at this time date”, the judges wrote in their ruling five to two.

Johnson was convicted in 2007 of shooting police Sergeant William McEntee, a father of three, on July 5, 2005, who he mistakenly believed killed his younger brother with a heart defect earlier that day.

The 37-year-old admits his guilt, but claims his accusation was tainted by misconduct.

Special Prosecutor EE Keenan, appointed by local officials in October, said he uncovered evidence of racism in the jury selection process that led to Johnson’s death sentence.

The Kansas City attorney also pointed to a disturbing trend in St Louis County Attorney Bob McCulloch’s office, which has handled five cases involving slain police officers over three decades. The prosecutor sought the death penalty in four of the cases, involving black defendants, but declined to seek the death penalty in a fifth case involving a white suspect named Trenton Dorster.

“There is no benefit to the public in rushing this execution tomorrow,” Keenan said discussed in court. “What suspending this execution will do is allow the legal process to proceed and, whatever the outcome, it will give the public confidence that if we have a trial or the death penalty carried out fairly and in a certain way, the public can be trusted.”

Mr. McCulloch, himself the son of a slain police officer, has denied any bias in Johnson’s case or any other.

Khorry Ramey, 19, with Father Kevin Johnson, 37, a Missouri inmate whose execution is scheduled for November 29, 2022. (ACLU)

“Show me a similar case where the victim was Black and I didn’t ask for death,” he was told St Louis Public Radio earlier this month. “And then we have something to talk about. But that case simply doesn’t exist.

Johnson’s lawyers heavily criticized the verdict.

“The prosecutor in this case asked the court to stop the execution based on the compelling evidence it uncovered last month that Mr. Johnson was sentenced to death because he is black,” Shawn Nolan She said in a statement to CNN. “The Missouri Supreme Court unknowingly refused to simply suspend the date of Mr. Johnson’s execution so that the prosecutor could present this evidence to the lower court, which refused to consider it in the first instance given the pressure weather”.

State officials said the Appellate Body made the right call.

“Mr. Johnson has received every protection afforded by the Constitutions of Missouri and the United States, and Mr. Johnson’s sentence and sentence stands for his horrendous and insensitive crime. The State of Missouri will execute Mr. Johnson’s sentence as ordered of the Court and will deliver justice,” Gov. Mike Parson She said Monday in a statement. “The violent murder of any citizen, let alone a Missouri law enforcement officer, should be met with only the most thorough punishment permitted by state law.”

The last-minute injection of new evidence isn’t the only thing unique about Johnson’s case.

His daughter, Corionsa “Khorry” Ramey, 19, has fought with state corrections officials to be allowed into the execution chamber as a witness, which is normally reserved for people 21 and older.

Last week, a federal court denied Ms. Ramey’s request.

The teenager, whose mother was killed in front of her when she was four, claims the state deprived her of the ability to say goodbye to her only living parent.

“I’ve suffered so many losses in my life: first I lost my father in prison when I was two, and then I watched my mother’s ex-boyfriend kill her when I was only four,” Ramey wrote in another statement. court. “It’s heartbreaking to know that I’m about to lose my father again.”

As he prepared for his execution Tuesday night, Johnson told news reports he was “unconditionally sorry” for shooting Sergeant McEntee and wished he were with his daughter.

“I am 100% sorry and I hate myself for July 5, 2005,” he said. The Kansas City star.

“How do I tell my little girl that you will never hear my voice again?” she added.

“I had planned to give her this long and tender farewell speech, but every time I looked into her eyes I just couldn’t,” she continued. “She means the world to me and I hate not being there for her.”

Critics have argued that the execution is part of a long line of injustices and racism that accompany capital punishment.

“We must end the death penalty in America,” activist Martin Luther King, III She said appropriate in a statement. “It is a cruel, unfair and inhumane tool imposed against people of color.”

Johnson’s death sentence begins at 6:00 pm on Tuesday, November 29 and he will be executed at the ERDCC prison in Bonne Terre, Missouri.

The state has two more killings planned over the next three months, with the executions of Scott McLaughlin in January and Leonard Taylor in February.

The independent and the non-profit Responsible business initiative for justice (RBIJ) have launched a joint campaign calling for an end to the death penalty in the United States. The RBIJ has attracted more than 150 well-known signatories to their Statement by Business Leaders Against the Death Penalty – with The Independent last on the list. We join high-profile executives such as Ariana Huffington, Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg and Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson as part of this initiative and are committed to highlighting the injustices of the death penalty in our coverage.

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