Monday, August 28, 2006

Amnesty International Urging Clemency

Amnesty International has sent out a press release urging a worldwide call to action in an attempt to get Governor Rounds to step in and stop the execution of Elijah Page.
(Washington, DC) -- Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) today urged clemency for Elijah Page, a 24-year-old man who is scheduled to be executed in South Dakota tomorrow night. Putting teeth into the call, Amnesty International, the world's largest grassroots human rights organization, has issued a worldwide call to action, mobilizing the public to send appeals to South Dakota Governor Mike Rounds on Page's behalf. AIUSA Executive Director Larry Cox has written to Governor Rounds, urging the commutation of Page's sentence.

Page was sentenced to death by a judge after pleading guilty and waiving his right to trial and sentencing by jury. Page's co-defendant Darrell Hoadley pleaded not guilty and was tried by a jury that found him guilty of exactly the same crime as Page, with the same aggravating factors. Hoadley was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

"Elijah Page's case clearly demonstrates that our capital punishment system is a lottery of death," Cox said. "Page was sentenced to death, and Hoadley was sentenced to life -- for the same crime. Page's execution must be halted at once."
The press release does bring up a somewhat under reported issue in this case, the fact that Darrell Hoadley, Page's accomplice in this crime who was also found guilty of the same charges received a life sentence instead of the death penalty awarded to Page.

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