Advocates to rally at the MO Supreme Court ahead of Oral Arguments for Kevin Johnson
On Monday, November 28th, the Missouri Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on a request for a stay of execution for Kevin Johnson.
This claim was brought to the forefront when after reviewing all of the evidence, a special prosecutor filed a motion to vacate the death sentence due to “purposeful racial discrimination.” This is the first time a prosecutor has intervened to stop an execution in Missouri.
Kevin is scheduled to be executed on Tuesday, November 29th at 6:00 pm at ERDCC in Bonne Terre, Missouri.
Civil rights and Faith Leaders, including Kevin’s spiritual advisor, Rev. Darryl Gray
will host a press conference prior to the Oral Argument outside the Missouri Supreme Court Building.
WHO: Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, The Missouri State Conference of the NAACP, and The Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc.
WHEN: Monday, November 28th at 12:30 pm
WHERE: Missouri Supreme Court Building, 207 W. High Street, Jefferson City, Missouri - for those unable to attend the audio will be available at 1:30 pm here: https://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=1975
“Throughout Kevin Johnson’s trial and appeals, it has become increasingly apparent that this conviction and death sentence is the product of systematic racial discrimination. The harm done by former prosecutor Bob McCulloch is still a matter of life and death for many living in St. Louis County,” said Nimrod Chapel, Jr. of the Missouri NAACP.
“As Kevin’s spiritual advisor, my number one concern is to save his life. Kevin’s case is the epitome of the racially bias application of the death penalty that plagued St. Louis County for so long. We are hopeful the Missouri Supreme Court will allow the time necessary to review that claim and spare Kevin from him the ultimate punishment on Tuesday,” Reverend Darryl Gray,
Michelle Smith, with Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, said, “we need to move into the next phase of holding Bob McCulloch accountable for decades of prosecutorial misconduct, racial biases, and targeting of the poor and marginalized. For many, including the six individuals left with death sentences from St. Louis County, the lingering atrocities of his reign persist.”
“Civilized countries don’t execute people based on the color of their skin,” says Shawn Nolan, counsel for Mr. Johnson, “but that is what the State of Missouri is about to do. We have a special prosecutor who is prepared to argue in court that everything about this prosecution reeked of racism. All we need is a court willing to hear this case. Any rational court would put a stop to this execution and that is what we are expecting the Missouri Supreme Court to do.”