Skip to comments.Obese Killer Spared by Governor
Posted on 12/19/2012 11:04:58 PM PST by nickcarraway
Ohio Gov. John Kasich granted clemency to 480-pound death row inmate Ronald Post, agreeing with the state parole board that Ronald Post's defense had been too poorly handled to put him to death.
An obese killer on Ohio death row successfully petitioned for clemency, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported Monday.
The attorneys of Ronald Post, who was condemned to execution for the 1983 murder of a motel clerk, petitioned fro clemency on claims both that his original defense had been inadequate and that he could not be humanely put to death due to his size.
Ohio Gov. John Kasich agreed to grant clemency to Post, following the Ohio Parole Board's 5-3 recommendation.
According to the Plain Dealer, the board said Post should not be executed, hinging their argument not on his 480-pound girth, but because he was not effectively defended by his original attorneys:
The board said the mistakes by Post's original attorneys included having Post take a polygraph test from an examiner who had already been retained by the prosecution in the case as well as enter a no contest plea with no assurance it would be considered mitigation in the sentencing phase.
"Regardless of the heinous nature of their crime, a criminal defendant is entitled to an effective defense, especially in a death penalty case," said Kasich in the statement.
Post will spend the rest of his life in prison with no possibility of parole, Kasich said.
... and it took these many years for the governor to see and act on the “poor defense” argument? I don’t buy it. The morally confused, weak governor has denied justice to the murderer’s victim and family, and has failed in his duty to carry out the laws of the state of Ohio.
>> Post returned to the Slumber Inn where he initiated another conversation with Carol Bokar. Carol introduced him to Mrs. Helen Vantz, who was to relieve Carol on the desk shift. Post accompanied Carol as she checked motel rooms for a possible problem. Carol then reported the day’s activities to Helen and told her that Post might return for a room. Post and Carol left together and proceeded to the Jackson Hotel where they met Sandy Collins, a friend of Carol. They stayed until about 2:15 a.m.
>>At approximately 3:00 a.m., Post, armed with the handgun, returned alone to the Slumber Inn. His plan was to kill Helen Vantz and steal whatever he could find. At the Slumber Inn, Post engaged Helen in conversation until past 4:00 a.m., when she made a wake-up call to room number 30. Her next wake-up call, scheduled for 6:00 a.m., was never made. Sometime between 4:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m., Helen, while sitting at her desk working on the nightly accounts, was shot in the head from behind by Post. Post shot her a second time to make sure she was dead. The body was later found, slumped at the desk, a pencil clasped in her hand.
>>After shooting Helen, Post collected certain items of value, including a bank deposit bag containing approximately $100, and Helen’s handbag. Post then drove to North Ridgeville where he met with Ralph and Debbie Hall. Post told the Halls what he had done and gave Ralph the gun for disposal. Post then went to the home of James Harsh in order to persuade Harsh to say that Post had been at the Harsh residence between the hours of 2:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. that day. Later, Post admitted to Harsh that he had killed and robbed Helen Vantz. Harsh then refused to support the alibi. Post also admitted his involvement in the crime to several others. Post admitted to two Elyria police detectives that he had told Thacker he was the perpetrator of the crimes.
I saw the title and immediately thought of 0bama's butt boy Christie Kreme.
In most respects I agree he is doing a good job. But in this case he has failed, both to carry out his duty and to act morally.
Let's see: First it was "the murderer is too fat to kill"; then it was "it's not fair to this murderer that the other convicted murderers received a lesser sentence"; then it was "the murderer had an ineffective defense" (which I suppose means it's a just reason to allow him to live, breathe and -- obviously -- eat, while his victim lost everything as a direct result of his complicity in the murder); and today it's "well, this murderer didn't actually pull the trigger, he just helped out a little". (Excuse No. 3 turns out to be the one the governor uses as justification to show mercy to the murderer after all this time.)
The governor's great moral failure is that by showing compassion to the evil he has been cruel to the innocent.
If the facts of the case are as described on this thread, I have to disagree with you. This man’s death sentence was handled so badly that a just society cannot countenance it.
I am a firm believer in a swift and sure death penalty, and for federal judicial reforms so that appeals are held swiftly, moving to the head of the appellate docket and with limits on how long the proceedings can be delayed; that federal judges cannot overturn a death penalty but only remand it back to the trial court for reconsideration; and that federal judges should not involve themselves with the minutiae of the execution, a given that states are ‘competent’ to carry out a death sentence.
This being said, I fully support a state governor’s authority to pardon or commute.
As a result of the governor's "brilliant insight" and awakening that was apparently lost on everyone else in the process, society must instead countenance that a murderer gets to keep his life while an innocent person has lost hers because of him. I think that is an injustice of cosmic proportions.
Thank you. I stand corrected
The fact that I disagree with so many who were there doesn’t particularly bother me, although it is obviously a consideration. Here is my thought process:
1. The convicted man pleaded “no contest” - a plea bargain.
2. He was the driver (as reported here), not the trigger man.
3. The shooter received life in prison, even though he was the active agent.
4. The plea-bargaining driver was given the death penalty FOR HIS PLEA BARGAIN.
5. I cannot see a competent lawyer allowing a plea bargain to the death penalty.
6. Either American juris prudence requires a competent defense or it doesn’t. If it doesn’t - then we have only kangaroo courts.
7. Prosecutors and juries can and do make errors of passion. I do not know the entirety of the facts in this case, but I can easily see the possibility of outrage over the life imprisonment of the shooter translating to the death penalty for the driver - which is not a supportable standard of law, IMO.
I believe the death penalty, correctly administered, is an effective deterrent. In this case, given the modicum of knowledge I possess, I can see a reasonable doubt that the penalty was justly imposed.
I firmly believe that law and order is a balancing act. The side of law (prosecutors, law enforcement, juries) generally gets benefit of the doubt. But when a person is to be executed, their work deserves a second look, through glasses that magnify potential and probable errors in applying the law.
To do otherwise is to invite every ham sandwich that is indicted to be railroaded.
One last point. I also believe that the death row appeals process is far to geared toward the convicted. I am unconvinced that this gearing posed a problem in this specific instance, though.
Thank you for your civil discourse on a difficult and emotional subject.
(Now if I don't get back to a report I've been working on since yesterday my client is likely to send out a hitman!)
You may not know the full story. These facts about the case have been known for 30 years. Yet, there was no clemency in all that time, until a few months ago when Post’s attorney made a motion about him being obese. How come these facts never became relevant to the obesity argument? I think you are being naive. If other Ohio death row residents have good lawyers, they should be off death row by this time next year.
Was there a jury? If it was a plea bargain, I’m thinking no.
Or maybe they just don't know as much about it as you do.
Not exact quote....Richard Hickock, killing partner of Perry Smith, told about a guy on death row that was fasting. Hickock said “They’ll fatten him up for the kill.”
I think they should put this guy on protein only and skinny him up for the kill.
It's not that the governor or your conjecture about what the parole board members were thinking does not deserve my condemnation, it's that the governor and what you presume the parole board members concluded conflicts with what the trial judge, jury and the many appeals court judges "who actually sat with the facts and made this decision, as opposed to reading a scanty media account" determined what should be the fate of the murderer. The governor, in my opinion, was wrong to show compassion to the evil and cruelty to the innocent.
not because he is obese, but because he did not kill anyone..
the triggermen got life, he drove the getaway car..
he was not even in the store when the killing occured..
he was sentenced to death, while the killers got life
I believe you have the details of this case confused with another. Please see Post 23