Dec 14, 2022
Oregon Governor Kate Brown Commutes Sentences Of 17 Death Row Inmates Transcript
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown announced plans to commute the sentences of the 17 people on death row to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Read the transcript here.
Transcribe Your Own Content
Try Rev and save time transcribing, captioning, and subtitling.
Speaker 1 (00:00):
With the stroke of a pen, Oregon’s Governor will effectively clear death row. The 17 inmates currently awaiting execution in Oregon will have their sentences commuted to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Kate Brown (00:13):
So I believe that there are many Oregonians that share my values that it is inequitable, immoral, and doesn’t make sense for the state to take a life, particularly when it is irreversible.
Speaker 1 (00:30):
Although the death penalty is legal in Oregon, the state hasn’t executed anyone since 1997. Throughout her seven years as Governor, Kate Brown has continued a moratorium on executions that her predecessor, former Governor John Kitzhaber, put in place.
Oregon’s death penalty was further curtailed in 2019 when Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 1013, which substantially shortened the list of crimes that could qualify as aggravated murder, the only crime for which prosecutors can seek the death penalty in Oregon. In an interview with KGW’s Pat Dooris, Governor Brown explained her decision to commute Oregon’s death row.
Kate Brown (01:10):
A couple of things. Number one, it is immoral. Justice is not served by the state taking a life. Secondly, its impact is inequitable, depending upon where you live in the state and in this country. And third, it doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t prevent violent crime, and it costs taxpayers millions of dollars.
Speaker 1 (01:35):
Brown’s commutation means none of Oregon’s current death row inmates could be executed even if a future governor were to end the moratorium, which is an unlikely scenario, at least for the time being. Governor-elect Tina Kotek has said she’ll keep the moratorium in place.