[Pnews] Lucasville Prison - Keith LaMar’s attorneys file response requesting to quash execution date and assert innocence

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Fri Sep 28 17:51:15 EDT 2018


The Lucasville Uprising was a rebellion against oppressive and racist 
policies at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility (SOCF) in 
Lucasville, OH. Nine inmates and one guard died during the uprising in 
April of 1993. Today, many people are serving time or condemned to death 
by the state of Ohio in relation to the uprising. We demand amnesty for 
all of these inmates. The conditions at SOCF were (and still are) 
intolerable and unconscionable.

  Keith LaMar Execution Motion Response

    Friday, September 28, 2018


“An execution date should not be scheduled because Mr LaMar’s death 
sentence is precisely the sort identified by the Joint Task Force to 
Review the Administration of Ohio’s Death Penalty. Mr LaMar’s conviction 
rests on prisoner testimony which is not independently corroborated; 
there is no physical or video evidence linking him to the crimes and he 
has always maintained his innocence. Evidence supporting Mr LaMar’s 
innocence is slowly coming to light after dogged efforts to unearth such 
proof following years of suppression.” -excerpt from motion.

Keith LaMar’s attorneys filed this response 
to prosecutor Mark Piepmeier’s motion requesting an execution date. 
Piepmeier was lead attorney on the Lucasville Uprising cases, and 
largely responsible for egregious misconduct and deal-making that 
secured these convictions 
based on informant testimony and withheld evidence. He has a documented 
pattern of doing the same to other defendants 

The response starts by pointing out ways that Keith’s case fits within 
recommendations made by the joint task force on death penalty cases 
<http://otse.org/56-recommendations/>, specifically: relying on 
uncorroborated snitch testimony, disproportionately targeting black 
people, and relying on evidence improperly withheld at trial. It goes on 
to detail that withheld evidence, including statements by trial 
witnesses and others that could easily cast reasonable doubt if not 
fully exonerate Keith if he were afforded a new trial.

Reading this portion of the document, which describes violent events 
occurring in the first hours and days of the uprising, a few things may 
become clear. First, the State of Ohio has no idea what actually 
happened during the uprising. One of Piepmeier’s accomplice prosecutors 
even admits this in an interview 
<https://vimeo.com/urbnu/shadowscreen1#t=2040s> for D Jones’ documentary 
film, /The Shadow of Lucasville/. Second, the rank injustice of the US 
criminal legal system is unconscionable. This case has exhausted its 
appeals and is reaching an execution date, which means the highest 
courts have found such evidence inadequate to win a new trial, or 
impermissible for them to even hear. Such a system must be unconcerned 
with justice, and motivated by inferior drives.

This is why we call for amnesty 
for recognizing that the state was ultimately responsible for the deaths 
that occurred at their “maximum security” prison in April of 1993. No 
more blood should be shed, lives taken or freedom denied in Ohio’s 
futile effort to scapegoat prisoners for the ODRC’s inability to keep 
peace, let alone rehabilitate or correct anyone in their prisons.

In October of 2015, Keith’s previous council presented only some of 
these statements and arguments before the panel at his appeal, so this 
document is the first official entry of this evidence into the court 
record. At that time, the three judge panel found against Keith in a 
decision that seems both patently absurd, but sadly unsurprising to 
and his supporters 
<https://truthout.org/articles/in-defense-of-keith-lamar/> who witnessed 
the hearing. Keith was not allowed to attend the hearing that advanced 
his case toward execution, and has not yet been able to see and respond 
to this document, or Piepmeier’s motion for his execution date.

Since September 17 when Piepmeier filed his motion, Keith has been 
spending time with close supporters and friends, continuing to focus on 
living his life despite restrictive supermax conditions 
of confinement, and not allowing the threat hanging over his head to 
dominate his time. If the supreme Court of Ohio ignores his lawyer’s 
motion approves Peipmeier’s request, Keith will likely be given a 2023 
execution date. He intends to fight and defend himself against this 
murder the state has premeditated against him, but at a time and means 
of his choosing, to whatever degree possible.

In the meantime, supporters can read the motions, Kieth’s book Condemned 
<https://www.keithlamar.org/condemned> and other writings 
<http://www.lucasvilleamnesty.org/search/label/Keith%20LaMar> to deepen 
our understanding of his case and the dearth of justice in the State of 
Ohio. We can share the motion around, write about it, and encourage 
journalists and others to help tell Keith’s story.

Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 https://freedomarchives.org/
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