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OH, IL, NJ Death Penalty Study Commission Structure Memo

OH, IL, NJ Death Penalty Study Commission Structure Memo

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Published by: api-3693980 on Oct 14, 2008
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To: CC: From: Date: Re:

OTSE Moratorium Committee Sarah Craft, Equal Justice Molly Wieser, AFSC 10/14/2008 Structure of Ohio’s proposed Death Penalty Study Commission

Below are summaries of structures of Death Penalty study committees in OH, IL, and NJ. The committees in Ohio and NJ are proposed, not yet created. The Ohio Commission is heavily populated by elected officials, compared to the Illinois Commission. Composition of IL Commission on Death Penalty....................................................................2 NJ proposed committee composition:........................................................................................5

Summary of Ohio’s HB 160 Proposed Commission Structure

Group to appoint the Commission: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Speaker of House Minority Leader of House President of Senate Minority Leader of Senate Rep. appointed by Speaker Rep. appointed by (2) Sen. Appointed by President Sen. Appointed by (4) Governor

The Commission1:

The appointed members of the Commission who are members of the House of Representatives or Senate shall be different individuals than the House or Senate members who make the appointments to the Commission. Not more than nine appointed members of the Commission shall be members of the same political party.


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October 14, 2008 1. Rep. of Governor 2. Rep. of Attorney General 3. Member of House (R) 4. Member of House (D) 5. Member of Senate (R) 6. Member of Senate (D) 7. Common Pleas Judge 8. Common Pleas Judge 9. Court of Appeals Judge 10. Court of Appeals Judge 11. Prosecutor 12. Prosecutor 13. Criminal Defense Attorney qualified as lead counsel in capital cases 14. Criminal Defense Attorney qualified as lead counsel in capital cases 15. Representative of an organization that advocates for the rights of victims of crime 16. Representative of an organization that advocates for crime victims' families for reconciliation, 17. Psychiatrist 18. Psychologist 19. Member of the general public 20. Member of the general public

Composition of IL Commission on Death Penalty

1. Former federal judge, now private attorney 2. Retired Senator Paul Simon, now professor 3. Former U.S. Attorney, now private attorney 4. Former U.S. Attorney and Deputy Governor for Criminal Justice and Public Safety 5. Retired attorney, Former prosecutor and defender and private practitioner 6. The public defender of Cook County IL (supervising 500 atty’s) 7. State Appellate Defender of Ill 8. private attorney, both DP defense and police brutality defense 9. Retired prosecutor, and experienced defense attorney 2

Page 3 of 5 10. private attorney, former prosecutor and public safety advisor 11. High profile Latino business owner, philanthropist 12. private attorney and author, former US Attorney (Turow) 13. Prosecutor for Lake County, Ill 14. Private attorney, former criminal defense, former prosecutor

October 14, 2008

15. private attorney, former director of CIA and FBI, former federal appellate and trial judge
Chairman, Judge Frank McGarr Now in private practice with a focus on mediation and arbitration, Judge McGarr served as a federal prosecutor and as the First Assistant Illinois Attorney General before spending 18 distinguished years on the federal bench. He served as Chief Judge of the Federal District Court for the Northern District of Illinois between 1981 and 1986. Co-Chair, Senator Paul Simon Senator Simon has served the people of Illinois with distinction, both as a member of the Illinois General Assembly and the United States Congress. Since he retired from the United States Senate in 1997, Senator Simon has been a professor at Southern Illinois University and Director of its Public Policy Institute. Co-Chair, Thomas P. Sullivan An accomplished litigator, Mr. Sullivan served as United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois from 1977 to 1981. Currently in private practice at Jenner & Block, he is often called upon lend his legal expertise, judgment and leadership on public interest committees. Former Deputy Governor Matthew R. Bettenhausen, Member and Executive Director Mr. Bettenhausen served as the Deputy Governor for Criminal Justice and Public Safety. A former Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Illinois, he most recently served as the Associate Chief of the Criminal Division. State agencies reporting to him as Deputy Governor included the Illinois State Police, the Illinois Department of Corrections, the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, the Office of the State Fire Marshal, and the Law Enforcement Training Board, among others. Kathryn Dobrinic, Member Ms. Dobrinic served for 12 years as the elected State’s Attorney for Montgomery County. Having practiced law in central Illinois for more than 20 years, Ms. Dobrinic served as the public defender in Christian County and has also worked in private


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October 14, 2008

Rita Fry, Member An award winning attorney, Ms. Fry is the Public Defender of Cook County, Illinois. The Office of the Cook County Public Defender is the second largest public defender’s office in the nation, with more than 500 attorneys providing indigent defense service in the largest county in the State. Theodore Gottfried, Member Mr. Gottfried is the State Appellate Defender of the State of Illinois, and has held the office since 1972. The office of the State Appellate Defender is responsible for providing appellate level and post-conviction indigent legal services throughout the State. With more than 140 attorneys state-wide, Mr. Gottfried’s office also provides advice and counsel to capital defense attorneys. Donald Hubert, Member Mr. Hubert is a Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and the American College of Trial Lawyers. A well-respected litigator, he has represented defendants in murder cases as well as police officer defendants in civil police brutality cases. He serves by appointment of the Illinois Supreme Court as Chairman of the Court’s Committee on Professional Responsibility and is a former president of the Chicago Bar Association. He has devoted significant efforts to various charitable efforts, including Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Hales Franciscan High School. William J. Martin, Member During his tenure as a prosecutor in the Cook County State’s Attorneys office, Mr. Martin is well-known as the man who prosecuted Richard Speck. He also has extensive experience as a criminal defense lawyer, and is well-acquainted with the capital punishment system. His subspecialty is legal ethics, and he has defended hundreds of lawyers in Illinois disciplinary proceedings. Thomas Needham, Member Now in private practice with the firm of Baird & Needham, Mr. Needham most recently served as the Chief of Staff for Chicago Police Superintendent Terry Hillard. Before joining the Superintendent’s office, Mr. Needham was a policy advisor to Mayor Daley on public safety issues and a veteran Cook County prosecutor. Roberto Ramirez, Member Mr. Ramirez is founder and president of Tidy International, a janitorial and custodial company which is one of the fastest growing Hispanic owned companies in the United States. He immigrated to the United States as a young boy with his widowed mother and eight siblings. In 1996, he founded the Jesús Guadalupe Foundation in honor of his parents, as a means to financially assist Latino students in their pursuit of higher education. Scott Turow, Member A partner with Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal, Mr.Turow is probably better known across the world as a best-selling author of legal novels. Mr. Turow served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Illinois for


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several years before entering private practice.

October 14, 2008

Mike Waller, Member The elected State’s Attorney of Lake County, Illinois, Mr. Waller is a veteran trial lawyer and prosecutor. The Lake County State’s Attorneys office is the third largest prosecutor’s office in the State. Andrea Zopp, Member A successful corporate lawyer, Ms. Zopp has also been a criminal defense lawyer, and formerly served as First Assistant State’s Attorney in Cook County. She is also a former Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Illinois. Judge William H. Webster, Special Advisor to the Commission A senior partner with the Washington law firm of Milbank, Tweed, Hadley and McCloy, Judge Webster has served as the director of the CIA and FBI. He has also served as a Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit; a U.S. District Court Judge and as a federal prosecutor in Missouri

NJ proposed committee composition:

• • • • • • •

five members appointed by the Governor, at least one of whom shall be appointed from each of the following groups: o Murder Victims Families for Reconciliation and the o New Jersey Crime Victims' Law Center; At least two of whom shall be appointed from the religious/ethical community in New Jersey two members appointed by the President of the Senate, one of whom shall be a Republican, and one of whom shall be a Democrat two members appointed by the Speaker of the General Assembly, one of whom shall be a Republican, and one of whom shall be a Democrat the Public Defender or his designee; the Attorney General or his designee; the President of the New Jersey State Bar Association or his designee; and a representative of the County Prosecutors Association of New Jersey.


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