COLUMBUS — Death row inmate Cleveland Jackson, 41, of Lima, has received another reprieve, this one from Ohio Governor Mike DeWine.
On Monday, DeWine postponed Jackson’s execution from Nov. 13, 2019, to Jan. 13, 2021.
DeWine said he issued the reprieve “due to developments regarding two of Jackson’s former legal counsel.”
On Friday, a certified disciplinary complaint was made public against the attorneys specifically related to their representation of Jackson.
The news release states “While a certified disciplinary complaint is only an allegation, this is a serious allegation raising significant questions that need to be resolved in the disciplinary process. It is prudent to issue a reprieve in this matter until the disciplinary process is resolved.”
Jackson, who is incarcerated in the Chillicothe Correctional Institution, is on death row after convictions on two counts of aggravated murder, one count of attempted aggravated murder and one count of aggravated robbery in connection with the Jan. 3, 2002, murders of 17-year old Lenshia Williams and 3-year old Jayla Grant in Lima.
Jackson and his half-brother, Jeronique Cunningham, went to a Eureka Street apartment to rob a man of drugs and money. Six of the eight people inside the home were lined up in the kitchen and shot in the head as they begged for their lives, according to court records.
Jackson’s execution, originally scheduled for May 29, then pushed back to Nov. 13, was first delayed after problems arose surrounding the lethal drug cocktail administered to death row inmates.
The State of Ohio was considering using expired drugs for future executions, but the DeWine administration stopped that from happening. The governor has pushed state correction officials to find a new set of execution drugs.
In a Sept. 8, 2019, story in The Lima News, Vicki Williams, mother of Lenshia Williams stated: “It’s so painful for them to keep delaying when nobody deserves to die more than he does.”
“I didn’t realize the years it would take to do it,” Williams said. “So now I know they’re in prison, but they’ve been in prison before. They’re not getting the punishment they deserve. … It makes me disappointed in the system, in the state, whoever, whoever’s responsible and I’m afraid, I’m really afraid they’ll change the state law. I’d be so devastated if they did that.”
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.