Ohio is set to execute an Akron man inmate later this month. If it happens, it will be the first execution in the state in three-and-a half years. And death penalty opponents are trying to stop it.
Retired United Church of Christ pastor, the Rev. Lynda Smith, is one of about a dozen people who stood outside the building where Gov. John Kasich’s office is located, holding signs and sending a message to him to stop executions in Ohio.
“People of color, poor people, get sent to prison and wind up on death row a lot more than white rich people," Smith says.
The state’s next execution is that of Ronald Phillips, who was convicted of raping and killing his girlfriend’s 3-year-old daughter in Akron in 1993.
His execution had been put on hold while courts determined if Ohio’s lethal injection method is constitutional. But a federal appeals court ruled last month the state can proceed.
So barring any action by the U.S. Supreme Court, Phillips will be put to death on July 26.