Site icon Ohioans to Stop Executions

The Issues

There are many ways in which the death penalty contributes to a broken criminal justice system in Ohio. Explore all of the issues below:



Nine men have been exonerated from Ohio’s death row since 1976.  These nine exonerations demonstrate how deadly mistakes can happen.  Can Ohio risk executing an innocent man? Read More

Race Disparity

Nearly two decades ago, the Ohio Commission on Racial Fairness stated, “The numbers speak for themselves. A perpetrator is geometrically more likely to end up on death row if the homicide victim is white rather than black.” Today, nothing has changed. Read More

Geographic Disparity

If you drive 100 mph on I-71 from Cincinnati to Cleveland, you could get a speeding ticket anywhere along the highway. It only makes sense that a law enacted in the state of Ohio should be applied the same way throughout the state. Today, the author of Ohio’s death penalty law likens it to a “death lottery,” because it is so unevenly applied from one county to the next. Read More

Murder Victims & Their Families

Sadly, the voices of victims and their families are often ignored. If only Ohio listened, they would hear the stories of people like Melinda Dawson, who lost her mother to violence: “I understand the impulse to destroy the perpetrator in the name of something called “closure,” but what I’ve discovered in my own heart is that healing is only possible when I choose to stop the cycle of killing, rather than perpetuate it.” Read More

Harming Prison Staff & Law Enforcement

Ohio asks too much of the people already charged with the important task to keep our community safe. Executions, in the words of former Ohio warden Rex Zent, create “residual victims,” traumatizing the prison staff carrying out the lethal injection procedure. Law enforcement professionals are capable of keeping our community safe without the death penalty. Read More


Texas, $2.3 million. Kansas, $1.26 million. That’s how much those states spend, on average, for a single death penalty case. Across the county, studies prove the death penalty is far more expensive than other sentencing alternatives. How much does Ohio spend? Read More

Ineffective Deterrent

When a murder is committed—in the intensity of that moment—is the perpetrator really thinking about the possibility of a death sentence? Numerous studies across the country have shown the death penalty to be an ineffective deterrent to violent crime. Read More

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