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Wesley Bell ousts McColloch in St. Louis County

Updated: Dec 21, 2020

Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty (MADP) has been working hard to end capital punishment in the State of Missouri. Today we are one step closer with the exciting victory of Wesley Bell in the prosecutor race in St. Louis County. Bell ran his campaign with the promise to never seek a death sentence. He defeated incumbent Bob McColloch in the primary election and will run unopposed in November.

“Wesley Bell is the only candidate running for Prosecuting Attorney who explicitly pledges to never seek the death penalty, and has done so throughout his campaign. He knows that capital punishment is expensive, ineffective at deterrence, and is also racially biased. Since 1976, there have been 157 individuals in the United States sentenced to death, and later exonerated. Thus far, four of these exonerations occurred right here in Missouri. Furthermore, decades of data and information determine that Capital Punishment is not a deterrent for violent crime. Exercising his discretion as Prosecuting Attorney, Wesley will never seek the death sentence.” (

MADP worked hard to organize the St. Louis County Reform Coalition because we know prosecutors have the power to decide to choose to impose a death sentence or life without parole. We want to congratulate Wesley Bell and our partners in the SLCRC for their amazing work. Congrats to the members of the St. Louis Reform Coalition, this work has set a model for other counties to move forward in prosecutor races across the State. Members include: Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, Organization for Black Struggle, Missouri Faith Voices, Missouri NAACP, Coalition Against Police Crimes and Repression – St. Louis, Black Lives Matter- St. Louis, and ACLU of Missouri.

You can read more about Wesley Bell’s historic victory here.

The timing of the Bell election is so important in the wake of the news about Governor Parson moving forward with the review inquiry into Marcellus Williams capital case. On Monday Parson announced he will allow a panel of five former judges to review the death penalty case of Marcellus Williams which has been called into question by DNA evidence. You can find more information on the case here. Please sign our updated petition here: Marcellus Williams.

Missourians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty will continue to work hard to effect change in Missouri but we need your support. All evidence shows that if we can organize enough supporters of abolition, raise their voices, and get them involved in our campaign – we can effectively persuade lawmakers to change policies and end capital punishment. The more people that we can engage as activists, the sooner the death penalty will end. The best way you can support an end to the death penalty is by becoming a contributor Please click here to donate today to help end the Death Penalty in Missouri.

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