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UPDATE as of April 20, 2022: Richard Moore's April 29 execution date has been stayed. Please continue to sign & share this petition.
Richard Moore is on death row in South Carolina on April 29 for the 1999 murder of James Mahoney while robbing a convenience store.
Moore, who is now 57 years old, has been on South Carolina’s death row for 21 years. SC Supreme Court Justice Kaye Hearn filed a dissent
in Richard’s case arguing that he is clearly not the “worst of the worst”. Other Justices argued that he is eligible for a death sentence because the murder was aggravated during what became an armed robbery.
Moore entered a convenience store in 1999 unarmed and intending to rob the place, but a fight soon broke out between him and the clerk, who had a gun, that resulted in James Mahoney being fatally shot.
Richard Moore gets to "choose" between being killed by the electric chair or the firing squad by April 14th. He has an upcoming hearing before Judge Jocelyn Newman on Thursday the 14th to determine whether he can be forced to choose between the state’s electric chair and the firing squad. Moore is arguing that when he was sentenced in 2001, the state only had 2 methods of execution, lethal injection and electric chair, and his execution would have been carried out by lethal injection. Moore is seeking an injunction that would halt his execution on multiple grounds, including that the law passed last year that introduced firing squad cannot be applied retroactively to him and that both the firing squad and electric chair amount to “cruel and unusual punishment” under the 8th amendment.
Moore’s lawsuit is also raising questions about why South Carolina has been unable to procure lethal injection drugs, while other states have been successful.
Moore’s attorneys also asking the state Supreme Court to delay the execution so the U.S. Supreme Court can review whether Moore's death sentence was a disproportionate punishment compared to similar crimes. The state justices denied a similar appeal earlier this week.
Just last month, the South Carolina Department of Corrections finished a total overhaul of their death chamber to prepare for executions by firing squad in which 3 volunteers will fire through a rectangular opening in the wall to kill a prisoner who is strapped to a metal chair, with a hood over his head and a target over his heart.
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Charleston, which covers the entire state of SC, has spoken out saying that the scheduled execution is “modern-day barbarism” and that “respect for life is, and must remain unconditional. This principle applies to all, even the perpetrators of terrible acts.
Please sign the petition asking Henry McMaster to do everything within his power to stop this execution, including issuing a stay, and seeking a path to clemency in the case.
Petitions will be delivered on your behalf by our allies at South Carolinians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty in the coming days.
Governor Henry McMaster
We are writing to ask that you to stop the April 29th execution of Richard Moore for the 1999 murder of James Mahoney. This murder, while tragic, was not premeditated and is not among the "worst of the worst." Moore entered a convenience store in 1999 unarmed and intending to rob the place, but a fight soon broke out between him and the clerk, who had a gun, that resulted in James Mahoney being fatally shot.
We are concerned that while the vast majority of states with capital punishment continue on a downward trend of executions, South Carolina is going against the trend by attempting to carry out an execution, despite the fact your state has not done so in nearly 11 years.
We, the undersigned, ask that you do everything within your power to stop this execution, including issuing a stay, and seeking a path to clemency in the case.
Thank you for your time and attention to this serious matter.