- Governor Strickland, Ohio, Attorney General Dann, President Bush, Prime Minister Gordon Brown
- United States of America
Updated: January 23, 2006
He was sentenced to death for the June 30, 1986 murder of Cynthia Collins. The terrible tragedy of Cynthia's death cannot be undone by executing Mr Richey, especially because it seems evident that it was an accident, not an arson.
In fact ALL scientific evidence shows that there was no arson. There was an accidental fire. No arson means no murder and no justice.
For 19 years Mr Richey has been on death row, waiting for justice, and it looks like the wait will continue. Mr Richey's conviction was over turned on 25th January 2005. The 6th Circuit court of appeals said that Mr Richey was rendered a "sitting duck" due to the ineffectiveness of his original attorneys.
One of the issues in the appeal concerned the 3 judges who presided over his trial in January 1987, and the fact that they sentenced him to death, mostly on the unsupported basis that they believed he had ripped down the smoke detector from the Collins apartment prior to the fire. There was absolutely no physical evidence whatsoever that could have substantiated their claim, but Judge Michael J Corrigan and the other two judges used this erroneous conclusion as an aggravating circumstance in wrongfully sentencing Mr Richey to death. However,Judge Patricia Gaughan conceded that Kenny did not do this.
But then for some reason we don't understand, Judge Patricia A Gaughan (from Federal court) ruled that the two issues that were not procedurally defaulted were "harmless" errors committed by the court. Judge Gaughan also admitted that, "Richey's experts certainly undermine the State's Arson Evidence," but denied his appeal anyway, as if the fact that the state introduced false and unreliable evidence during trial is not serious.
The smoke alarm being down was the SOLE reason Kenny recieved the death penalty.
On 28th November 05 the US supreme court denied Kenny's case, not on the grounds of his case or innocence but rather on the grounds of courts arguing with one another. They overturned the 6th circuit decision. Kenny is back in the same hellish postition he was before,
Mr Richey will now have to wait for about a year and a half at least until this goes through the 6th circuit court AGAIN
A few years ago the prosecutor Daniel Gershultz offered him a deal: he would have Mr Richey transferred to a Scottish prison immediately, and if the Scottish authorities chose to release him the very same day he arrived there, the State of Ohio would agree to it. Had Mr Richey accepted this offer, he would very probably be free today. He didn't accept it, however, because simply being free is not enough. Mr Richey knows he is innocent that's why he seeks complete exoneration and justice.
There will be a hearing at 6th Circuit Federal Court on 24th January 2007.
We are not asking for clemency either, we are asking that the State of Ohio stops opposing a new and fair trial for Mr Richey. Justice can only be served with a new trial and only a new trial. Mr Richey does not fear a new trial. He welcomes it.
UK residents can also sign http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/JusticeforRichey/
"Even though this new evidence may establish Mr. Richey's innocence, the Ohio and United States Constitutions nonetheless allow him to be executed because the prosecution did not know that the scientific testimony offered at trial was false and unreliable." -- Prosecutor Dan Gershutz.
No case presents more evidence of a flawed judicial system than does Kenny Richey's. He is currently on Ohio's death row for a crime he did not commit and which, in fact, appears not to have been a crime at all. How can that be? Please look into the case and then ask for a trial for Kenny Richey so he can have his evidence heard for the first time EVER!
The A safe, fair trial for Kenny Richey petition to Governor Strickland, Ohio, Attorney General Dann, President Bush, Prime Minister Gordon Brown was written by Karen Torley and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.