Group opposing death penalty schedules Capitol press conference, vigil during execution
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Published: 15-Jan-2015

The Oklahoma Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty has announced a press conference called “What Would Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Do?” regarding the state killing of Charles Frederick Warner. The event will be held on Thursday, Jan. 15 at 10 a.m. in the State Capitol 4th floor press room - #432B.

The State of Oklahoma has scheduled  Charles Frederick Warner at 6 p.m. on Thursday.

A renowned humanitarian and civil rights leader, Dr. King received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 for his efforts in combating racial inequality through nonviolence. Dr. King said of capitol punishment, “I do not think that God approves of the death penalty for any crime, rape and murder included. Capital punishment is against the better judgment of modern criminology and above all, against the highest expression of love in the nature of God.”

The OK-CADP coalition is calling for Gov. Fallin to halt executions in Oklahoma.

“We at the Oklahoma Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty are deeply disturbed at the upcoming execution of Charles Warner,” said Rev. Adam Leathers, OK-CADP board member. “It is a meaningless act of emotionally charged vengeance and has absolutely nothing to do with justice for any victim of a crime.”

Event speakers will include State Rep. George Young (D-OK County); Former State Senator Connie Johnson (D-OK County); Garland Pruitt, President. Oklahoma City Branch NAACP; Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director ACLU-OK; Brady Henderson, Legal Director ACLU-OK; and Rev. Leathers.

“Scheduling the first of Oklahoma’s four state sponsored murders in 2015 on the birth date of one who stood for peace sends a very subtle and sublime message about our practices as a state in showing mercy and compassion for the least of us,” said Johnson.

Johnson also criticized “recent state policy changes that ensure even less public and press scrutiny” of the execution process.

After Warner, the State has set execution dates for Richard Eugene Glossip on Jan. 29; John Marion Grant on Feb. 19; and Benjamin Robert Cole, Sr. on March 5.

Later on Thursday OK-CADP is organizing a "Don't Kill for Me" demonstration in front of the Governor's mansion, 820 NE 23rd Street at Phillips Avenue. At 6 p.m. participants will begin a silent vigil until notice of a stay of execution is received or the execution is carried out.

We fear, as we remember the night of April 29, that Mr. Warner and/or those after him will suffer the same gruesome fate that Mr. Lockett did,” Leathers said.

Information from OK-CADP is available online at: www.okcadp.org

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