Governor DeSantis is planning to kill a mentally ill man two weeks from today.
Duane Owen, the man DeSantis wants to kill on June 15, was first diagnosed with schizophrenia over thirty years ago. Two weeks ago, an expert concluded Duane Owen was incompetent to be executed. Nonetheless, a commission appointed by Governor DeSantis found that Duane Owen has no current mental illness and is eligible to be executed.
Actions to take:
• Sign a petition and read details about Duane’s casehere, urging the Governor to stay the execution and grant clemency for Duane. This link also has a petition for faith leaders.
• Read threeaward-winning 250-word essays urging common sense on the death penalty by three of Hillsborough County’s top high school seniors.
• Join Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty (FADP) and other death penalty opponents for the Tampa Bay area vigil to stay the execution of Duane Owen and to oppose the death penalty
– Time: 5:00-6:00 PM on Thursday, June 15
– Location: the northwest corner of Ulmerton Road and 49th Street North in mid-Pinellas County, a busy intersection near the Pinellas court and jail complex.
– Park in the vacant lot behind Checkers. We will provide signs, or you can bring your own.
• Contact Governor Ron DeSantis at (850) 488-7146 or email the Governor (flgov.com). Prepare for your call or email with the essays cited above, with FADP’s excellent Florida Death Penalty Fact Sheet, and with the details of Duane’s case.
• For the latest updates and powerful analysis of the death penalty, sign up for Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty’s excellent email.
From FADP Executive Director Maria DeLiberato:
Sadly, Duane’s pending execution serves as a reminder that Florida has a disturbing history of executing people with serious mental illness. FADP, in conjunction with journalist Alan Johnson, has compiled a booklet of stories shining the light on Florida’s shameful past. Read the first of these tragic stories here.
Every execution is a devastating reminder that Florida is on the wrong side of history. But to repeatedly execute the most ill and the most vulnerable in our society is simply unconscionable. Help us continue to expose this truth about Florida’s fatally flawed death penalty system.