In High-Tech Era, MD Death-Row Inmate Makes Video Appeal


Maryland death row inmate Vernon Evans Jr. has made a 17-1/2 minute video seeking clemency from Gov. Robert Ehrlich, the Baltimore Sun reports. On it, a sister talks about beatings he endured as a child. Another relative says he was sexually abused and tried to commit suicide by the age of 10. A college professor talks about his man’s “moral insight.” His mother tearfully pleads for mercy. Evans himself says that, “in my mind getting my life turned around was the only means I had to show how sorry I was in being a part in taking of another human life.”

Evans, 56, is trying to stop an execution scheduled for next week. Yesterday, a Baltimore judge denied a request for a temporary delay. Closing arguments in a federal lawsuit challenging Maryland’s lethal injection procedures are scheduled for today. But last night, Baltimore County prosecutor Stephen Bailey called the video “a blatant attempt to manipulate Governor Ehrlich based on emotion rather than facts or sound judgment.” Evans was convicted in the 1983 contract killings of two motel clerks. “It’s the technology era. People just don’t read everything anymore,” Julie S. Dietrich, one of Evans’ lawyers, said. “So we wanted a video to accompany our [clemency] petition.”


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