Gov. Meets With Victims, Lawyers About Pending Execution

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Governor John Hickenlooper is meeting with lawyers, victims' families and law enforcement about the pending execution of a Colorado death row inmate.

The Governor is holding private meetings today and tomorrow in the Nathan Dunlap case.

Dunlap was sentenced to death for killing four people at a Chuck-E-Cheese restaurant in 1993. Earlier this week a judge ruled that Dunlap could be executed in late August, but his lawyers are trying to keep Dunlap from facing the death penalty. The Governor has the sole right to pardon or commute Dunlap's sentence and his lawyers hope that Hickenlooper will grant him clemency.

His lawyers are challenging the constitutionality of the death penalty and asking the Colorado Supreme Court to require the Corrections Department to get public input on its procedure of using lethal injections for executions.

The death penalty was reinstated in 1975, following the Supreme Court's 1972 ruling in Furman v. Georgia which found all states' death penalty statutes unconstitutional. In 1976, Colorado's new death penalty statutes were approved by the Supreme Court.

Lethal injection is currently the sole method of execution in the state of Colorado.