Local News

Colo. governor retains right to grant reprieves to death row inmates

Colorado death penalty curbs rejected by lawmakers

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Colorado lawmakers have rejected a GOP proposal to curb the governor's ability to grant reprieves to death row inmates.
A bill considered Monday was inspired by the indefinite reprieve issued last year by Gov. John Hickenlooper.
Hickenlooper granted the reprieve for Nathan Dunlap, who killed four people at an Aurora Chuck E. Cheese in 1993.
Republican Rep. Libby Szabo (R-Arvada) suggested a bill to give governors just 90 days for any death-penalty reprieve. A Democratic committee rejected the proposal 6-3 on Monday.

Szabo told KRDO NewsChannel 13 before the committee hearing that she was hopeful the bill would make it through committee.

"I believe that this has come up in the past year and in order for justice to be served, this bill is a must," Szabo said.

One Colorado Springs woman has mixed feelings about the death penalty in Colorado.

Pam Kinslow's son, Tommy, was murdered outside their home in the 3900 block of Constitution Avenue on November 22, 2005.  The crime has not been solved.

"His clothes are in the closet, clothes are in the dresser, his things are hanging on the wall," Kinslow said.  "We can't let go."

Kinslow told KRDO NewsChannel 13 that she's not against the premise of the death penalty, but thinks that since it's not being used in Colorado, the money should be used elsewhere -- perhaps to solve cold cases like Tommy's.

"I feel like the money they waste on that, if they put it to cold cases it would be a lot better," Kinslow said.  "I mean, I wish they would kill all of them who have committed murder, but they don't."

One person was arrested shortly after Tommy's murder.  Tipsters said he bragged about the slaying, but the 19-year-old was later released because blood found on Tommy's clothing did not match his DNA.  Since then, Kinslow says investigators have been following leads to no avail.

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