Former Gov. Ryan Explains Why He Emptied Death Row

March 01, 2011

Former Illinois Gov. George Ryan says two people helped him make his historic decision clear the state's death row in 2003: An innocent man who was once two days away from being executed and a childhood friend who asked if Ryan was going to allow his son to be put to death.

Ryan's comments came last March in a deposition taken at a federal prison in Indiana, where Ryan has been locked up since late 2007 after his conviction of corruption charges. The deposition was released to the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune after the newspapers filed freedom of information requests.

Under questioning by a city of Chicago attorney, Ryan angrily denied his decision had anything to do with the federal probe that led to his conviction.

Story source: AP