ON DEATH ROW FOR A MURDER HE HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH
It’s one of the most controversial cases in America: Richard Glossip has been on Oklahoma’s death row for 23 years, even though everyone agrees another man, Justin Sneed, actually committed the murder. Glossip’s conviction was based primarily on statements made by Justin Sneed. But new evidence shows the killing was a botched robbery carried out by Sneed and a female accomplice, and Glossip wasn’t involved. Now, while Sneed serves a life sentence, Glossip’s execution may be fast approaching.
Richard Glossip is on Oklahoma’s death row because the actual, admitted killer, Justin Sneed, invented a story to satisfy detectives and save himself.Sneed initially claimed he didn’t kill his boss, motel owner Barry Van Treese. But detectives said they knew he did and didn’t act alone, and if he didn’t name his accomplice, he’d be left “holding the bag” for murder.
Detectives fed Sneed a name: motel manager Richard Glossip. Sneed agreed to their suggestion, saying Glossip had enlisted him in a robbery and he’d only meant to knock Van Treese out. But then, under pressure, Sneed changed his story yet again to say Richard asked him to kill Van Treese.
Sneed’s coerced accusation, fed to him by police, that Glossip orchestrated the murder, is the only real evidence against Glossip. No DNA or fingerprints from Glossip. No eyewitnesses. Just the admitted killer’s made up story, a story that’s changed eight times.
Sneed had a clear motive for a robbery that got out of hand: he was a known thief and meth addict. But police never investigated it and a jury never heard about it.
Throughout Glossip’s case, prosecutors withheld and destroyed evidence, and intimidated and even arrested witnesses.Today, Sneed serves life in a medium security prison. And Glossip’s execution could be scheduled any day.