MADP’s 2017 annual report is posted. Read the full report here.
- Nationally, executions and death sentences remained near historically low levels in 2017, the second fewest since 1991. In 2017, Missouri had one execution and one new death sentence.
- The only new death sentence in 2017 was for Marvin Rice this October. It was the first new death sentence in Missouri in four years and was imposed by a judge, contradicting 11 of the 12 jurors in the case who wanted life for Rice. Rice’s case highlights how Missouri judges can undermine the role of a jury in the state’s death sentencing statute.
- Missouri executed one person in 2017: Mark Christeson. Christeson still had outstanding federal appeals, and he died without ever having his case reviewed in a federal court.
- Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens stayed the scheduled execution of Marcellus Williams, set for August 22, to convene a Board of Inquiry.
- Missouri has scheduled one execution for 2018: Russell Bucklew on March 18. Bucklew suffers from a rare medical condition that could make his execution prolonged and painful, and the U. S. Supreme Court previously issued a stay for Bucklew in 2014.
- Regional patterns of executions in Missouri show similarity to historic patterns of lynching. These form a “death belt” across the state in which executions and lynchings occur in concentrations in clusters of counties.