It’s not often we have positive news to share on death penalty cases. However, in August 2017 we heard back news on two cases in the US whereby the Governor in Missouri issued a stay of execution and the Governor in Arkansas announced his intent to commute a death sentence.
On 22 August, the governor of Missouri issued a stay of execution for Marcellus Williams who was due to be put to death later that day. The governor issued a stay of execution so as that he could appoint a five-member Board of Inquiry to consider “all evidence presented to the jury, in addition to newly discovered DNA evidence, and any other relevant evidence not available to the jury”. The Board “shall report and make a recommendation to the Governor as to whether or not Williams should be executed or his sentence of death commuted”.