Ohio death row exoneration is nation’s 140th
Jill L Francke
January 23rd marked the date of the nation’s 140th death row exoneration. Joe D'Ambrosio, who was freed from death row two years ago, has now had all charges against him dismissed after the US Supreme Court rejected the state’s final attempt to reopen his case. D’Ambrosio was convicted of the 1989 murder of Anthony Klann in Cleveland. However, it was later revealed that prosecutors withheld ten pieces of evidence implicating another suspect in the crime.
D’Ambrosio joins 139 other men and women, including five others from Ohio, who have been found guilty, sentenced to death, and later exonerated after new evidence revealed they had been wrongfully convicted. These exonerations have given us a window into all of the things that can go wrong in a criminal case and highlight many of the flaws with our nation’s death penalty system.
Kevin Werner, executive director of Ohioans to Stop Executions, praised the efforts of those who were responsible for D’Ambrosio’s release in a recent interview, “What this case clearly shows is that the death penalty system in Ohio with all of its safeguards still makes mistakes and I think we’re just relieved that Joe D’Ambrosio had some extraordinary attorneys who worked tirelessly for … 20, 30 years to prove that he was not guilty."