National, local leaders speak out against death penalty

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TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Local and national leaders speak out against the death penalty resuming in Terre Haute.

On June 11th of 2001, Timothy McVeigh was executed at the Terre Haute Federal Penitentiary.

Ashley Kincaid-Eve, a public defender in Marion County says although she wasn’t in Terre Haute, one of her lasting memories of that day was a conversation she had with her father about the sunset.

“He said ‘Hey poo, what’s that?’ and I thought he was just trying to distract me so he could tickle me like he always did and I was like ‘I don’t know dad, the sun’. Then he just pointed at it and he goes ‘that’s Timothy McVeigh’s last sunset’ and just threw his head back in laughter,” Kincaid-Eve said.

Kincaid-Eve says while her dad found laughter in McVeigh’s death, she did not.

“I just remember in that exact moment as a 13 year old girl just flashing inside of somebody’s cell and imagining what it would be like if that was my final sunset and how i would feel in that moment,” Kincaid-Eve said.

Now Kincaid-Eve and other national and local leaders are speaking out against the death penalty resuming in Terre Haute in December.

Some say they believe it puts an unnecessary burden on the community.

“What are we doing to the people that live in Terre Haute in asking them to become the execution capital of the country for that week?,” said Abe Bonowitz, co-founder of Death Penalty Action.

Bonowitz who advocates against the death penalty across the country says one of the main groups he is focused on as federal executions resume are the workers inside of the prison.

“The burden we’re asking our state workers, our prison workers, the federal prison workers to take on is this burden of taking a defenseless person and killing them,” Bonowitz said.

Bonowitz says he believes families in Terre Haute should ask themselves several questions leading up December 9th.

“What’s the example being set and do we feel like this is an appropriate use of our tax dollars? Is this helping us? Is it making us any safer? Or is it creating an impression that violence is an appropriate response to violence?,” Bonowitz said.

The first inmate scheduled to be executed on December 9th is Daniel Lewis Lee.

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