FF12: Will Kansas’ death row inmates ever be executed?

The last time anyone was executed in Kansas was in 1965.
Published: Jan. 9, 2023 at 11:07 PM CST
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WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Currently in Kansas, nine men are on death row. Will they ever be executed? If so, who makes that decision? Where would it happen, and how much does the process cost? With the U.S. Supreme Court declining to hear appeals from Jonathan and Reginald Carr, questions come regarding the next steps and how the death penalty process works in Kansas.

The last time anyone was executed in Kansas was in 1965. Some in the state have been on death row for decades, going back within a few years of Kansas reinstating the penalty in 1994.

Kansas Coalition Against the Death Penalty Vice Chair Ron Wurtz said after someone is sentenced to death, the process for an execution can take years and even decades due to a lengthy appeals process. It goes back and forth between local, state and federal courts. After all appeals are exhausted, then it would head to the governor.

“To seek clemency,” Wurtz explained.

Once that process is over, he said, the Supreme Court would set an execution date “and it would go on from there.”

Wurtz said the Lansing Correctional Facility has a death chamber for lethal injection.

Considering the lengthy appeals process, another common question is how much it costs to have inmates on death row.

“It’s a long, long, long process. IT costs millions of dollars, and a large percentage of cases are never executed even though they get a death penalty from the start,” Wurtz said.

Currently, he said no one is sure when the next execution in the state of Kansas could happen.