A blog produced by the Oregon Justice Resource Center discussing the death penalty (capital punishment) in Oregon and in the Ninth Circuit.
From the Statesman Journal Officials OK timetable to reconsider Haugen’s death sentence
In a matter of minutes Wednesday, lawyers laid out a weeks-long timetable for considering Gary Haugen’s request to reinstate his death sentence.
The hearing is scheduled at 9:30 a.m. June 11 in Marion County Circuit Court, after written arguments are submitted beforehand by Haugen’s lawyers and by the state. The Department of Justice is representing Gov. John Kitzhaber, whose Nov. 22 reprieve is being challenged by Haugen.
Agreement on the timetable took barely five minutes in an open court proceeding.
Lawyers spent nearly an hour in a closed-door conference with retired Judge Timothy Alexander, brought in from Washington County.
Haugen’s side will file its arguments by May 18, and the state by June 4.
Haugen has filed a motion to quash the governor’s reprieve, but the court did not act on it Wednesday.
Haugen is seeking to reinstate the warrant signed last year by Judge Joseph Guimond, who has retired. The Oregon Supreme Court upheld the warrant in a 4-3 decision Nov. 21. Haugen had been scheduled to die by lethal injection Dec. 6 at the Oregon State Penitentiary.
On the day after the Supreme Court decision, Kitzhaber announced he was issuing a reprieve to Haugen and imposing a moratorium on all executions through the rest of his term ending Jan. 12, 2015. No other executions were imminent when Kitzhaber acted.
Haugen, in a statement in court Wednesday, called it “an unsolicited reprieve.”
Haugen, who has had previous disputes with lawyers representing him, also said: “My greatest fear … is that I am being forced to proceed without counsel.”
Lawyer Harrison Latto was Haugen’s representative Wednesday.
Kitzhaber chose not to commute any death sentences, but said he hoped his Nov. 22 action would start a discussion about legal alternatives to the death penalty.
Kitzhaber let stand Oregon’s most recent executions in 1996 and 1997 during his first term. Both inmates had waived their appeals.
Haugen, 50, has been in prison since 1981 for the murder of his girlfriend’s mother. He began another sentence while in prison for the 2004 murder of another inmate.
Under the Oregon Constitution, the governor has broad authority over reprieves, commutations and pardons, except in cases of treason. The only requirement is that the governor must report actions and reasons to the Legislature at the start of each session.