When the North Carolina General Assembly passed the Racial Justice Act in 2009, it guaranteed that no individual would be put to death because of racial bias within the state’s justice system. Since then, there’s been a battle in the North Carolina legislature to repeal it. What’s behind this debate? Some say clogged courts and unfounded claims by death row inmates. Attorneys and co-hosts Bob Ambrogi and J. Craig Williams, along with Cassandra Stubbs, a senior staff attorney with the ACLU Capital Punishment Project and James E. Coleman Jr., the John S. Bradway Professor of Law at Duke University Law School and Co-director of Duke’s Wrongful Convictions Clinic, take a look inside the issues. They explore the great debate, the repeal and what this means for inmates on death row.
A lawyer who has spent 30 years representing inmates who sit on death row is our guest on this edition of the BU Law podcast. Host and media veteran, Dan Rea of WBZ-Radio 1030 welcomes Kenneth J. Rose, senior staff attorney at the Center for Death Penalty Litigation in North Carolina, to spotlight the Center and their work with death row inmates. Dan and Ken discuss the personal 10-year battle to save a mentally challenged farmhand, Bo Jones from execution, the 2009 Racial Justice Act, misrepresentation by attorneys and the great debate over the death penalty.