South Dakota group speaks out against Eric Robert execution - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

South Dakota group speaks out against Eric Robert execution

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In just four days, South Dakota will carry out it's first execution in 5 years.

This afternoon, warden Doug Weber announced Eric Robert will be executed around 10:00 Monday night.

Robert's attorney Mark Kadi says Robert is calm and reflective.

He's trying to make peace with himself and god.

Kadi says he plans to meet with Robert again today and over the weekend.

None of Robert's family or friends will be attending his execution.

KSFY News spoke with a member of a group who doesn't want the execution to happen.

A member of South Dakotans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty told KSFY News that executing Robert is not the solution.

He doesn't think the death penalty stops violent crime.

Rather he says a life in prison is the best punishment for a criminal.

Roger Elgersma said he protested against the execution of Elijah Page and says he will be there for Robert.

Eric Robert may already be waiting in his holding cell for his execution.  The state will transport him 3 days in advance of the execution.

Elgersma hopes to change opinions about the death penalty.

"Some are going to agree and some are going to disagree. if they get a chance to know why we have out position is more important than just seeing somebody protesting. People protest various things but our reason have a logical basis to them that makes sense to people. they may have to stop and hear what we're thinking," Elgersma said.

Elgersma said he sent a letter to the governor about the upcoming executions.  He wanted the governor to understand why some people in the state believe the death penalty is not a deterrent to violent crime.  He has yet to receive a response.

Donald Moeller is the next death row inmate to be executed.

Moeller was convicted for the 1990 murder of nine-year-old Becky O'Connell.

A federal judge ruled this week the state's death penalty procedure does not violate Moeller's constitutional rights.

The state will execute Moeller the week of October 28th.

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