Impending Execution of Richard Glossip Temporarily Halted by Supreme Court Over Potential Appeal

Impending Execution of Richard Glossip Temporarily Halted by Supreme Court Over Potential Appeal

The execution of Oklahoma death row inmate Richard Glossip, scheduled for May 18th, has been temporarily stayed by the US Supreme Court as it considers taking the man’s appeal. Glossip, who was convicted of the 1997 murder-for-hire of motel owner Barry Van Treese, has always maintained his innocence. His last chance of being granted a reprieve will likely come from a Supreme Court decision or a pardon from Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt. Many officials in Oklahoma, including the state’s Republican Attorney General Gentner Drummond, have urged that Glossip be granted a new trial, given major questions about the credibility of the state’s key witness and other evidentiary issues. Glossip’s clemency request was denied by Oklahoma’s state parole board on April 26th, while his request for a new trial was rejected by a state appeals court earlier in the month. Critics argue that the evidence against Glossip is weak, with prosecutors’ main point relying on the testimony of Justin Sneed, a then-19-year-old who alleged that Glossip paid him to beat Van Treese to death. There have been inconsistencies in Sneed’s testimony, and he was subject to a highly coercive police interrogation before cutting a deal with officials and avoiding a death sentence. Sneed has since recanted his testimony, confessing to carrying out the murder of his own volition. Glossip’s attorneys were not aware of Sneed’s admissions of doubt until decades after Glossip’s original conviction. In 2022, Reed Smith law firm reinvestigated Glossip’s case at the request of state lawmakers, concluding that the case against him was full of holes. The organization Responsible Business Initiative for Justice (RBIJ) and The Independent have launched a joint campaign calling for an end to the death penalty in the US.

Maxwell Thompson is a seasoned political correspondent who has covered elections, policies, and international relations for over a decade. With a degree in political science and a natural curiosity for global politics, Maxwell brings a unique perspective to his writing. In his downtime, he enjoys reading historical biographies and analyzing political trends.

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