NAACP chapter asks Gov. Nixon to commute death sentence

Nov 15, 2013

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon.
Credit Kristofor Husted / KBIA

The head of the NAACP Salt Lake City branch is asking Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon to commute a death sentence for a serial killer who killed two Salt Lake City joggers in 1980.

Joseph Paul Franklin is scheduled to be executed next week for the 1977 murder of a Missouri man outside a synagogue. He was also convicted in the 1980s killings of 20-year-old Ted Fields and 18-year-old David Martin, both black men.

Jeanetta Williams, president of the NAACP's Salt Lake Branch, says in a letter to Nixon that the execution costs more than keeping Franklin in prison for life.

Franklin has claimed responsibility for nearly two-dozen other killings and many other crimes.

He admitted shooting Hustler magazine publisher Larry Flynt in 1978 but was never charged.