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Oklahoma Court Declines to Bar Duo From Death Penalty Case

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OKLAHOMA CITY—The Oklahoma Supreme Court has rejected a request to remove two members of the state’s Pardon and Parole Board from a high-profile death penalty case. The court’s brief ruling on Friday denied a prosecutor’s request to remove Adam Luck and Kelly Doyle from considering the commutation request of Julius Jones, who was sentenced to death for the 1999 killing of Edmond businessman Paul Howell. The ruling came after a lawyer for District Attorney David Prater argued before a court referee that unless members Luck and Doyle were barred from taking part in the decision, the five-member board would likely recommend that Jones’ sentence be commuted following a hearing Monday. Prater, who argued that Luck and Doyle have a conflict of interest because of their work with released inmates, said in a statement that he respects the high court’s decision. “This is the system I operate in every day and …

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