Source : Oklahoma Attorney general
OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board today voted 4 to1 to deny clemency for Tulsa County death row inmate Michael Bascum Selsor, Attorney General Scott Pruitt said.
Michael Bascum Selsor, 57, is scheduled to be executed May 1, for the first-degree murder of Clayton Chandler, 55, on Sept. 15, 1975. The U.S. Supreme Court denied Selsor’s final appeal on Feb. 21.
According to the autopsy report, Chandler died after suffering six gunshot wounds. The victim was killed during a robbery of a Tulsa convenience store where he worked.
Selsor and his accomplice Eugene Dodson, 71, robbed the store and shot two employees. Chandler was killed, and the other employee, Ina Morris, 20, survived after being shot multiple times by Dodson.
In 1976, Selsor was tried by a jury and sentenced to death. He also received life imprisonment for shooting with the intent to kill Ina Morris. Later that year, Oklahoma’s death penalty was ruled unconstitutional by the U. S. Supreme Court, and the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals adjusted Selsor’s sentence to life imprisonment. In 1996, the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned Selsor’s conviction. During a retrial in 1998, Selsor was again convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death.
Dodson was acquitted for the murder of Chandler. However, he was convicted of robbery and shooting with intent to kill Morris after a former felony conviction. Dodson was sentenced to 50 years for armed robbery, and 199 years for shooting with intent to kill.
April 16, 2012, source : http://www.postcrescent.com
— An Oklahoma death row inmate’s plea for clemency was rejected Monday by the state Pardon and Parole, which voted 4-1 against commuting the inmate’s death penalty to life in prison without parole.
Michael Bascum Selsor, 56, apologized to family members of 55-year-old Clayton Chandler, the Tulsa convenience store clerk he was twice convicted of killing during a robbery 37 years ago, and reminded board members he had confessed to the crime.
“I didn’t pass the blame, I shared the shame,” he said during a brief appearance before the board via teleconference from the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester.
“Is it too late to say I’m sorry?” Selsor said. “I am truly sorry for the suffering and damage I have caused.”
Selsor said he knows he will die in prison and believes he could be a mentor and friend to young inmates facing lengthy sentences.
“I’ll try to be an example for the young guys,” Selsor said.
But Chandler’s daughters urged the board to not interfere with the death penalty a Tulsa County jury gave Selsor in 1998. He is scheduled to die by lethal injection on May 1.
“I think it’s time to put this to rest,” said Debbie Huggins, who fought back tears as she and her sister, Cathy Durham, remembered their father and asked board members to deny Selsor’s request for clemency.
“When we were growing up, our dad was our best friend,” Huggins said.
“I was his little girl,” Durham said. She said her father’s death had denied him an opportunity to walk her down the aisle at her wedding and get to know his grandchildren.
Huggins said Selsor made a conscious choice when he entered the convenience store where her father worked and repeatedly shot him with a .22-caliber pistol on Sept. 15, 1975. Prosecutors say Chandler suffered eight bullet wounds.
“My daddy had no choice,” Huggins said.
After the women’s presentation, board Vice-Chairperson Marc Dreyer said he was sorry for their loss. Chandler’s widow, Anne Chandler, attended the clemency hearing but did not address the board.
Selsor’s attorney, Robert Nance, invoked Christian religious beliefs and cited biblical scriptures as he urged board members to commute Selsor’s death penalty.
“God can use those who have done evil to accomplish good,” Nance said. “Grace as I understand it is an unmerited gift from God. God does that because he loves us.”
Assistant Attorney General Robert Whittaker reminded board members that while Oklahoma law allows them to extend mercy, it also requires them to uphold lawful convictions and court judgments.
“The Pardon and Parole Board is not church,” Whittaker said.
Selsor was originally sentenced to death following a 1976 trial, but the U.S. Supreme Court later invalidated Oklahoma’s death penalty statute. The Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals modified Selsor’s sentence to life in prison.
But Selsor initiated a new round of appeals challenging his conviction and in April 1996, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals threw out Selsor’s murder conviction as well as two other related convictions.
Selsor was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death a second time following a retrial. The same jury recommended Selsor serve a life term as an accessory to the shooting of Chandler’s co-worker, Ina Louise Morris, who survived multiple wounds inflicted by a co-defendant, Richard Eugene Dodson. In addition, the jury imposed a 20-year term for armed robbery.
Selsor and Dodson were arrested in Santa Barbara, Calif., a week after Chandler’s slaying. At the 1976 trial, a Santa Barbara police detective testified that Selsor admitted shooting Chandler during the robbery.
Dodson, now 71, was convicted of robbery and shooting with intent to kill and is serving a prison sentence of 50 to 199 years in prison.
Meeting Notice Confirmation
|Michael Bascum Selsor
||Hillside Community Corrections Center
3300 Martin Luther King Ave.Oklahoma City, OK91854
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