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Obviously Innocent Richard Glossip Gets Stay Of Execution
Here's some good news, sort of! Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt has once again postponed the execution date for Richard Glossip, the brazenly innocent inmate sentenced to death for the 1997 murder-for-hire of his boss Barry Van Treese. It is now being put off until Feb. 16, 2023, "to allow time for the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals to address pending legal proceedings."
Glossip was convicted at two separate trials of hiring Justin Sneed, an itinerant meth-head who worked at the motel he managed, to kill Barry Van Treese, the owner of the motel and Glossip's boss — promising that if he did so, the two of them could split the money in Van Treese's car and that Van Treese's wife would put Glossip in charge of all of the motels and let Sneed manage one himself — even though the motivation for the murder was supposed to be that both of the Van Treeses had accused Glossip of embezzling money and had threatened to go to the police, while for some reason still keeping him on as manager of their motel.
The only evidence against Glossip was Sneed's word and the fact that police found $1,200 on Glossip. The whole story makes very little sense as most of it was (and this is on video) concocted by as a collaboration between the meth head and Detective Bob Bemo, who started his interrogation of Sneed by telling him that he "knew" Glossip was guilty and that Sneed could avoid the death penalty if he said he did it on Glossip's orders.
At issue, Glossip's lead attorney Don Knight told Oklahoma's News9 , is a petition filed by his legal team arguing that Justin Sneed lied during his testimony during Glossip's trials in 1998 and 2004, citing new evidence of a letter Sneed sent to the public defender's office suggesting he wanted to recant, along with a letter to Sneed from the public defender's office telling him that he would get the death penalty should he recant.
“There are a lot of things eating at me right now. There are somethings [ sic ] I need to clean up," Sneed wrote in his letter, which is contained in a new supplemental report from Reed Smith. “I’m going to try to contact the indigent defense over his case or the D.A.’s,” he wrote, adding “I think you know were [ sic ] I’m going it was a mistake. Reliving this.”
Sneed's daughter wrote a letter in 2014 asking for clemency for Glossip, stating that she believed that Sneed would come clean about what actually happened if they took the death penalty off the table and let him keep his original deal for life without parole.
Knight also said that Glossip's scheduled hearing with the state's pardon and parole board next week would be moved to an as-yet unspecified date in January.
The problems with Glossip's case are so glaring that even Republican members of the Oklahoma Legislature are begging Gov. Stitt to pardon him, with otherwise terrible person state Rep. Kevin McDugle saying that if Glossip is executed, he will oppose the death penalty forever.
Quite frankly, the fact that the case has even been able to get to this point, the fact that 24 jurors thought to themselves, "Yes, this whole bizarre narrative makes lots of sense and this man is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt," should probably be enough evidence to prove that we are not good enough at determining guilt to allow something as permanent as the death penalty.
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