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Executions will continue in Oklahoma, following a high court ruling that the drugs used are constitutional. Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor has requested execution dates for the Oklahoma detainees on death row.
Currently, 25 detainees on death row have exhausted their options for appeals and are eligible for execution. Attorney General O’Connor asked Oklahoma’s highest appeals court to set the dates for the men and women.
The Oklahoma Department of Corrections has requested the dates not start before August 25th. Attorney General O’Connor asked the appellate court for dates every four weeks following that date.
Attorney General O’Connor wrote, “For the sake of the victims’ families, many of whom have waited for decades — as many executions as possible are set four weeks apart.” The Attorney General, who is up for re-election this year, did not mention any specific victims.
Oklahoma Attorney General John O’Connor seeks to kill as soon as possible
However, Attorney General O’Connor already has plans in mind for who he would like to see executed first. Attorney General O’Connor stated in the filing that the order is based on when the inmate’s final appeal was exhausted.
Death row is disproportionately populated by Black men and women. While Black people make up 14% of the United States, Black men and women make up 34% of those who are executed.
In a ten-year-study of homicide cases in Philadelphia, researchers found the odds of receiving the death penalty in Philadelphia increased by 38% when the accused was Black. Additionally, among the 38 states that allow the death penalty, approximately 98% of the prosecutors are white.
In Oklahoma, out of the total 44 detainees on death row, over 40% of death row detainees are Black. Oklahoma’s population of Black citizens is 7.8%.
Meanwhile, while the drugs used for executions in Oklahoma have been ruled constitutional, Oklahoma still has a reputation for botched executions. Just last October, John Grant convulsed and vomited before his death.
Additionally, the Oklahoma public defender Jennifer Moreno has stated that the attorneys who fought the execution drug court case are considering an appeal of the ruling. However, she has not yet said anything about Attorney General O’Connor’s filing.