President Trump: Please Stop the Federal Executions

Donald J. Trump, President of the United States of America

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The Trump Administration resumed federal executions in July after a 17 year hiatus, and carried out seven executions between July 14 and September 24, 2020. This unprecedented pace of executions make President Trump the most-executing president since the 1950's.

THREE MORE EXECUTION DATES ARE PENDING: Case details/links are below. More dates may be announced at any time.

In a time frame of less than six months President Trump has now exceeded President Eisenhower's eight executions in his entire two terms in office. With the execution on December 10th (International Human Rights Day), Trump continued as the first lame duck president since 1889 (131 years) to execute a federal prisoner. And he's not done yet.

Many problems exist with federal, military and state death penalty laws. These issues are explored in great detail, here. Death Penalty Action believes the death penalty is not necessary to be safe from dangerous offenders or to hold them accountable.

President Trump has made his mark on this issue and secured his place in history. No further executions are necessary. Add your name to urge President Trump to order Acting Attorney General Rosen to withdraw all pending execution warrants and to refrain from setting any new federal execution dates. The petition also asks the President to commute (change) the death sentences of all remaining federal and military death row prisoners to life sentences.

NOTE: The information in this background and the asks within the deliverable petition language may be adjusted from time to time to keep them current as to scheduled federal executions. Petition signatures will be submitted to the President at appropriate moments in the coming weeks.


THE NEXT EXECUTIONS:

Besides the use of the federal death penalty being an affront to human rights and criminal justice, there are other factors surrounding each case:

Lisa Montgomery, the only woman on federal death row, is scheduled to be executed on January 12, 2021 in revenge for the 2007 kidnapping and killing of Bobbie Jo Stinnett. Montgomery suffers from severe mental illness and the devastating impacts of trauma and abuse she suffered as a child, including being sexually trafficked. Lisa was also represented at trial by an incompetent lawyer who has the dubious distinction of having more clients on federal death row than any other attorney. Executing Lisa Montgomery would be a profound injustice. Visit SaveLisa.org for further details and action opportunities.

Corey Johnson is scheduled to be executed on January 14, 2021, in revenge for multiple murders as part of a drug gang. Johnson and his fellow gang members were sentenced to death in federal court in Richmond in 1993. The trio was indicted in April 1992 and was charged with killing 10 people. Another killing has also been attributed to the gang but was not prosecuted. The gang's victims included rival dealers, suspected snitches, and those who disrespected the gang or any of their partners. Johnson's attorneys said in a joint statement: "Corey Johnson is a person with intellectual disability. Yet, despite compelling evidence demonstrating his intellectual disability, no jury or court has ever listened to the evidence at a hearing to decide if he has intellectual disability. Under federal law and pursuant to the Supreme Court’s decision in Atkins v Virginia, Mr Johnson’s intellectual disability should prohibit his execution from being constitutionally carried out. We are not aware of any other federal death penalty prisoner who has never had a single evidentiary hearing at which he could present his intellectual disability evidence. The government should not proceed with Mr Johnson’s execution in the absence of a thorough and fair opportunity for him to present this evidence."

Dustin Higgs is scheduled to be executed on January 15, 2021, in revenge for his role in the murders of Tamika Black, 19, Tanji Jackson, 21, and Mishann Chinn, 23. Shawn Nolan, attorney for Mr. Higgs, said in a statement: "Dustin Higgs did not kill anyone and should not be executed. All witnesses agree that the sole shooter was Mr Higg’s co-defendant, Willis Haynes, who was tried separately and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of release. It would be arbitrary and inequitable to punish Mr Higgs more severely than the person who committed the murders. Although compelling evidence was available at time of the trial and would have supported a plea for life, the jury that sentenced Mr Higgs to death did not hear all of the mitigating information showing he is not ‘the worst of the worst,’ because his attorneys failed to develop and present it fully. Mr Higgs deserves clemency because of the unfair sentencing disparity in case, and because, despite the tragedy and hardship of his early life, he has been a model prisoner and is an active parent who is essential to the well-being of his son." Dustin Higgs has a web site at http://www.savedustinjhiggs.com.

This section will be updated if/when new execution dates are scheduled.
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To: Donald J. Trump, President of the United States of America
From: [Your Name]

We are writing to urge you to order Acting Attorney General Rosen to withdraw all pending execution warrants and to refrain from setting any new federal execution dates.

There are issues of deep concern about fairness and appropriateness of a death sentence in each of the pending executions. Please carefully review information provided to you by the legal teams of each prisoner.

President Trump, your administration has carried out eight executions since July, making you the most-executing president since the 1950's. You have made your point. Please commute (change) the death sentences of all remaining federal and military death row prisoners to life sentences.

Our nation is strong enough and smart enough that it can hold dangerous offenders accountable and be safe from them without executions. We do that every day in the vast majority of homicide cases. The death penalty is not an effective tool to stop crime. We know that:

* Government makes mistakes;
* The criminal legal system is fraught with disparity and unfairness;
* Prison workers should not be forced to take on the burden of killing defenseless prisoners once, let alone at the rapid pace of the recent federal execution schedule; * It is a cruel hoax to suggest that executions provide healing to murder victim family members. We can and must do better for the families left behind in the wake of violence.

Thank you for your time and attention to this serious matter.