What Are Gov. Stitt’s Options As Julius Jones’ Execution Nears?

Wednesday, November 17th 2021, 9:51 pm


Time is ticking for Gov. Kevin Stitt to intervene in the execution of Julius Jones, who is now 41 years old.

Jones has spent nearly 20 years on death row after being found guilty in the 1999 murder of Edmond businessman Paul Howell.

News 9 legal expert Irven Box said a lot is on the line for all involved.

“The decision this governor is making is probably one of the harder decisions any governor in this country has made in the last (few) years,” said Box. “This will make or break him politically, number one, I think it could.”

Stitt has a wide range of choices ranging from doing nothing at all to granting Jones his freedom.

“He could grant clemency, he could grant a life with the possibility with parole,” said Box. “He could commute it to life with the possibility without parole. He could do any of those things.”

Communities across the country wait on pins and needles as Stitt decides Jones’ fate.

A decision that can be made in the 11th hour.

“The governor could call at the last-minute tomorrow (Thursday), 3:59. He can call and say, 'stop execution, I’m staying the execution,'” said Box. “He could do it that late.

If the governor decides to replace Jones' death sentence to life without parole, he could reapply for commutation every three years.