Pardon and Parole Board recommends clemency for Oklahoma death row inmate Julius Jones

Although a decision on his fate is up in the air, his execution is scheduled for Nov. 18.


The Oklahoma State Pardon and Parole Board on Monday recommended clemency for death row inmate Julius Jones.

The board voted 3-1 in favor of granting clemency for Jones, who has been on death row for more than 20 years for the 1999 murder of Edmond businessman Paul Howell. One board member recused themselves from the vote.

Along with clemency, the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board recommended commuting Jones' death sentence to life with the possibility of parole.

"The Pardon and Parole Board has now twice voted in favor of commuting Julius Jones’s death sentence, acknowledging the grievous errors that led to his conviction and death sentence," Jones' lawyer, Amanda Bass, said in a news release. "We hope that Governor Stitt will exercise his authority to accept the Board’s recommendation and ensure that Oklahoma does not execute an innocent man."

Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt will now decide Jones' fate. He has not said how he plans to decide in the case, only saying that he wouldn't decide until after the clemency hearing.

His office released the following statement to Oklahoma City sister station KOCO: "Governor Stitt is aware of the Pardon and Parole Board’s vote today. Our office will not offer further comment until the governor has made a final decision."

Jones spoke during Monday's clemency hearing, giving his account of the night Howell was killed, the days after and his trial.

Watch the video player below to see Jones' testimony.

The recommendation comes more than a month after the same Pardon and Parole Board recommended that Jones' sentence be commuted, which set up Monday's clemency hearing.

It also came less than a week after Oklahoma resumed executions for the first time since 2015. The state put John Grant to death last week.

Although a decision on Jones' fate is up in the air, his execution is scheduled for Nov. 18.

Jones has gained a lot of support over the past few years, especially from several high-profile celebrities, including Kim Kardashian and Baker Mayfield.

Howell's family said before the clemency hearing that they hoped the Pardon and Parole Board would vote based on facts instead of Hollywood fiction. His daughter spoke with sister station KOCO in October, saying a lot of misinformation had spread about Jones and the case.