Delegate Pushes Death Penalty In West Virginia For 27th Straight Year
Written by Andrew Forgotch
Last updated on March 26, 2013 @ 7:42PM
Created on March 26, 2013 @ 7:01PM
There's an old saying that goes, "if at first you don't succeed try, try again". It appears that one Delegate in West Virginia lives by that motto.
Despite the fact that officials from Maryland are about to become the sixth state in as many years to abolish the death penalty, Republican Delegate John Overington from Berkley County is on a quest to bring the death penalty back to the Mountain State.
"No one deserves to die no matter how heinous their crimes are," Morgantown resident, Shawn Szonyi said.
For at least the last 26 years most of our law makers in Charleston have shared Szonyi's stance on capital punishment.
For the 27th year in a row Overington is pushing legislation to bring back executions to the Mountain State. In years past his attempts haven't gone very far.
"I've known him (Overington) for about 22 years," Democratic Delegate Ron Fragale, from Harrison County, said. "Since I met him he's been introducing this same legislation. John's quite sincere about it."
Overington has told reporters that his interest in bringing back executions goes back to the case against Ron Williams.
Williams killed a police officer in 1975 and was sent to jail. He eventually managed to escape and then killed another cop.
Fragale said lawmakers should consider other issues before talking about Overington's legislation. He said that most of the people in prison in West Virginia are there for minor drug problems.
"We've proven that when we addressed prison overcrowding," Fragale said. "They're repeat offenders."
However there are some that support Overington's movement. Kyle Macavoy, a Morgantown resident, told 5 News he likes the idea of bringing the death penalty back to West Virginia for the first time in a half-century.
"If you eliminate capital punishment people will seek their own justice on their own," Macavoy said. "Truly despicable crimes deserve proper punishment."
Reports have suggested that Overginton's push is poised to fail again this year.
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