Oklahoma lawmakers propose bill that prevents those sentenced to death from seeking commutation

A House bill could alter Oklahoma’s criminal justice system by preventing convicted individuals from seeking commutation.

HB 3903 — written by Okla. Rep. John Pfeiffer (R-District 38) ― states that the Pardon and Parole Board wouldn’t be able to recommend to the Governor anyone who was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole or death.

The bill would no longer allow commutation for death row inmates. This means their case would only appear before the Pardon and Parole Board once their execution date is scheduled. When inmates appear before the board, they can only be considered for “mercy or lenience,” and the board would not be able to hear any claims of innocence.

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