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Parole Board turns down John Wayne Conner's clemency request

5:48 p.m. Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The State Board of Pardons and Paroles today turned down John Wayne Conner's request to stop his execution set for Thursday evening.

The board reached its decision about two hours after District Attorney Timothy Vaughn, the prosecutor in Telfair County, laid out the details of the 1982 murder of J.T White, but also told of two other people Conner had killed -- one when he was 15 and the other just months before White's death.

Earlier in the day, the five board members heard from Conner's attorneys, two sisters and other friends who wanted to the board to consider his violent upbringing as they considered his clemency request.

The board does not explain its reasons.

Unless the courts grant his appeal, the 60-year-old Conner will die by lethal injection at 7 p.m., becoming the sixth person Georgia has executed this year. His execution would come 34 years to the day of when he was convicted.
Georgia to Execute John Wayne Conner Thursday

Loganville-Grayson, GA

By Doug Gross (Patch Staff) July 13, 2016 1:59 pm ET      

A Georgia death-row inmate is set to become the sixth person put to death by the state this year.

John Wayne Conner, 60, is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson.

The execution would set a new record for Georgia. The state has never executed more than five people in a year in the 40 years since the death penalty was reinstated.

Conner was sentenced to death in 1982 for the murder of James T. White in Telfair County..

The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles on Wednesday morning heard appeals by Conner's attorneys for clemency.

In their application to the board, lawyers argued that during his 34 years in prison, Conner "has transformed himself from a violent young man with severe substance abuse problems into a peaceful and productive member of the prison community."

They argued that Conner grew up in impoverished conditions in a home "where vicious physical assaults, incest, sexual abuse and alcoholism were the norm" and that he has been denied a proper mental health evaluation.

A Superior Court judge in Butts County already had declined to halt Conner's execution.  His attorneys are appealing that decision to the Georgia Supreme Court.
No appeals filed at the 11th or SCOTUS.  Conner's ambulance chasers will probably make a move tomorrow if clemency is denied.
Panel holding clemency hearing for Georgia death row inmate

ATLANTA (AP) -- The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles is holding a clemency hearing today for an inmate scheduled to be executed on Thursday.

 Representatives for 60-year-old John Wayne Conner will have an opportunity Wednesday morning to appear before the board to argue on his behalf. Conner is set to be executed tomorrow at the state prison in Jackson by injection of the barbiturate pentobarbital.

 Conner was convicted of beating his friend J.T. White to death in January 1982 during an argument after a night of drinking and marijuana use.

 The parole board is the only entity authorized to commute a death sentence in Georgia.

 In a clemency application, Conner's attorneys asked the board to consider his extremely violent childhood, as well as evidence they say proves he's intellectually disabled.  :P

Lawyers argue for clemency for John Wayne Conner

WMAZ 7:31 AM. EST July 12, 2016
Lawyers for convicted killer John Wayne Conner argue his childhood was a product of  "violence, incest, poverty, depression, academic failure and mental impairment."  :P

The state Board of Pardons and Paroles on Tuesday released the clemency petition for Conner, who is scheduled to die Thursday night.

He was convicted in 1982 of killing a friend, J. T. White, in Telfair County, after a night of drinking and marijuana smoking.

His lawyers argue that Conner's case is "a relic of a bygone era," when death-penalty defendants were often poorly defended.  :P

His original trial lawyer, they say, had no previous death-penalty experience and presented no evidence at trial.  :P

His pro-bono appeal lawyer, according to the petition, was granted "zero resources" to investigate the case and defend him.  :P

They say jurors and judges never heard the "shocking and tragic story," of Conner's childhood in Milan, including sexual abuse.  :P

In prison, his lawyers write, Conner has become a "valuable, productive & peaceful" member of prison community & found relationship with God.

His lawyers argue that Conner's childhood, which included sexual abuse does not excuse his crime. But they say it explains how he became so steeped in drugs, alcohol and violence "that he drunkenly beat a friend to death in reaction to a lewd comment."

The state parole board has scheduled a clemency hearing for 9 a.m. Wednesday in Atlanta. He is scheduled to die by lethal injection Thursday night at the state's death-row prison in Jackson.
Georgia Prepares for Sixth Execution of the Year

John Wayne Conner's lethal injection would set a record in Georgia, which hasn't executed more than five people in a year in the modern era.

By Doug Gross (Patch Staff)   

Georgia Prepares for Sixth Execution of the Year

ATLANTA, GA -- A man who beat a drinking buddy to death with a stick is set to become Georgia's sixth death-row inmate executed by lethal injection this year.

John Wayne Conner is scheduled for execution by lethal injection at 7 p.m. on Thursday, at Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson.

If the execution goes through, it would set a new record for Georgia. The state has never executed more than five people in a year in the 40 years since the death penalty was reinstated.

Five death-row inmates were executed in 2015 and 1987.

There have been 64 men and one woman executed in Georgia since the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty in 1976. Conner would be the 43rd put to death by lethal injection.

There are presently 63 men under death sentence in Georgia.

Conner was sentenced to death in 1982 for the murder of James T. White in Telfair County.
U.S. Death Penalty Discussion / Lethal injection drugs becomin...
Last post by Rick4404 - July 09, 2016, 02:19:26 AM
State corrections departments across the country are finding it harder and harder to replace expiring stocks of the drugs which are used in a lethal injection. This is because most overseas drug manufacturers are refusing to sell their products to correctional facilities in the United States for the purpose of carrying out a lethal injection.

With it becoming harder for the states to legally obtain the lethal drugs, many states are revisiting the possibility of reinstating former methods of execution, including electrocution, firing squad and hanging. Oklahoma has also enacted legislation which would allow execution by nitrogen asphyxiation in the event that the state is not able to conduct an execution via its primary means, lethal injection.

Utah passed legislation that reinstates the firing squad as the means of execution, in the event that the state is not able to obtain a supply of the lethal drugs for an execution.

I doubt that any of the handful of states which used to employ lethal gas as the primary means of execution will move to resurrect their gas chambers anytime soon.  First of all, no manufacturer makes either the replacement parts for a gas chamber, nor a gas chamber itself.  Nearly all of the gas chambers in the United States have sat empty for decades and most likely would leak during an execution because of the state of disrepair they are in. 

Will more states wind up throwing in the towel and do away with the death penalty altogether?  That's hard to say.  I might hazard a guess that might become an attractive proposition.  Especially to a state that has carried out less than a handful of executions since capital punishment was reinstated.     
Condemned killer's lawyers seek mercy from Georgia Parole Board

 John Wayne Conner's lawyers will plead with the State Board of Pardons and Paroles on Wednesday to stop his execution for the 1982 murder of a drinking buddy. After that, the Telfair County district attorney will ask the Board to allow the lethal injection to go forward.

 Conner murdered J.T. White after the two men and Conner's girlfriend after a party in Eastman on Jan. 9, 1982.

 At Conner's house after the gather, the three were not ready to call it a night.

 But Conner, then 25, and White, 29, needed more bourbon, so they walked to a neighbor's house to ask for a ride to the liquor store.

 The neighbor refused and they headed back to Conner's house.

 On the way, White "made a statement about he would like to go to bed with my girlfriend and so I got mad and we got into a fight and fought all the way over to the oak tree and I hit him with a quart bottle," Conner told investigators according to court records.

 White ran and Conner chased him into a roadside ditch.

"He was swinging, trying to get up, or swinging at me to try to hit me," Conner told detectives. "There was a stick right there ... and I grabbed it and went to beating him with it."

Conner, leaving White, went home.

 He woke Bates and told her they had to leave town because he may have killed White. But he also needed to make sure, so they drove back to the place where they had fought.

 Bates told investigators Conner walked into the woods and moments later she heard a thud. Conner returned to the car, telling her White was dead. "Let's go," he said.

 Conner and Bates were picked up the next day in Butts County, where Georgia's Death Row is located.

 Conner's scheduled lethal injection comes as the pace of executions in Georgia is increasing. Yet, death sentences are being rendered less often in Georgia.

 At this time, Conner is the only Death Row inmate who has exhausted his appeals, though several others are nearing the end of legal recourse.

 The last time Georgia carried out an execution was on April 27, when Daniel Anthony Lucas died by lethal injection 18 years and four days after he murdered Steven Moss and his two children in their Jones County home.

 This year Georgia has also executed Joshua Bishop, Kenneth Fults, Travis Hittson and Brandon Astor Jones.
 The only other times Georgia has put to death as many as five people in a year was in 2015 and in 1987.
Killer's last meal; fried fish, hush puppies, deluxe hamburgers

 Condemned murderer John Wayne Conner has requested a high-calorie meal before his execution scheduled for next week.

 According to the Georgia Department of Corrections, the 60-year-old man has asked for 10 pieces of fried catfish, 10 hush puppies, two triple deluxe hamburgers with bacon, two pints of vanilla ice cream and a sliced raw onion.

 If he is put to death as scheduled next Thursday at 7 p.m., Conner will be the sixth person Georgia has executed this year, a record number in the 40 years since capital punishment was reinstated.
Clemency hearing set for Georgia death row inmate

 ATLANTA -- Representatives seeking clemency for death row inmate John Wayne Conner are to meet with the State Board of Pardons and Paroles at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, the day before Conner is scheduled to be executed by lethal injection at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson.

 Conner received the death sentence, set for 7 p.m. July 14, for the January 1982 murder of James T. White in Telfair County. A jury found Conner guilty of malice murder, armed robbery and motor vehicle theft that July, sentencing him to death. In May 1983, the Georgia Supreme Court affirmed his convictions for malice murder and motor vehicle theft and his death sentence, but reversed his armed robbery conviction.

 The U.S. Supreme Court denied Conner's appeal on Feb. 29.

 The Parole Board, which has the sole constitutional authority to grant clemency and commute or reduce a death sentence to life with the possibility of parole or to life without the possibility of parole, only considers commutation of a death-sentenced inmate after all judicial avenues of relief appear to have been exhausted.

 The meeting is expected to be closed, as authorized by Georgia law, and no public comment will be taken at the meeting nor any other business conducted.
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