Marion Wilson, Jr., Georgia

Updated: Thursday, June 20, 2019  5:37 pm EST

The Georgia Supreme Court has rejected a petition for clemency from Marion Wilson, Jr. If executed, Marion will be the 1,500th inmate executed in the United States of America since capital punishment was reinstated by the Supreme Court of the United States in 1976. 

Updated: Thursday, June 20, 2019  9:31 am EST

The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles has rejected a request for clemency from Marion Wilson, Jr. In a statement, the Board reviewed all evidence in the case against Marion, as well as possible mitigating evidence, before rejecting clemency. The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles is the only authority in the state that can grant clemecny.

Updated: Tuesday, June 18, 2019  8:49 am EST

Marion Wilson, Jr., has requested clemency from the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles. Marion and his lawyers are arguing that Marion's trial lawyers failed to present evidence regarding his upbringing and brain damage that could have swayed jurors to not vote for the death penalty.  Additionally, they claim that it was improper for the prosecutor to state during the trial that Marion could have been the shooter, and then later state at the trial of Robert Butts, Marion's co-conspirator, that Robert was the shooter.  They also point to the fact that the prosecutor initially offered Marion a plea deal, which would have resulted in a life sentence, with the possibility of parole.  Marion rejected the offer.

Updated: Monday, June 17, 2019  10:16 am EST

Marion Wilson, Jr., is scheduled to be executed at 7 pm EST on Thursday, June 20, 2019, at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison near Jackson, Georgia. Forty-two-year-old Marion is convicted of the murder of Donovan Corey Parks on March 28, 1996, in Milledgeville, Georgia. Marion has spent the last 22 years on Georgia’s death row.

Marion had a difficult childhood and was often neglected by his parents. His father abandoned them when Marion was young, and alcoholism was common in his family. Due to violence in the family, Marion was forced to move during his early school years. Marion’s mother eventually remarried, however, Marion was abused by his step-father. Marion struggled in school and did not receive the help needed. Marion became involved in crime at a young age and has a juvenile record.

On March 28, 1996, Robert Butts and Marion Wilson, Jr., took Butts’ vehicle to Wal-Mart, where they began searching for a victim. Butts and Wilson were observed entering the store and getting in a check-out line behind a man later identified as Donovan Corey Parks, a prison guard. Butts only purchased a pack of chewing gum.

Butts was observed asking Donovan if he could give Butts and Wilson a ride. Donovan agreed, moving items in his vehicle to make room for the two men. Donovan was found lying face down on a nearby residential street minutes later. Wilson alleges that Butts shot Donovan in the back with a shot gun. Nearby witnesses who heard the shot, thought it was a vehicle backfiring.

 

Butts and Wilson took Donovan’s vehicle to service station in Gray, Georgia, where they were caught on security camera refueling the vehicle. The duo then drove to Atlanta, Georgia and attempted to sell the vehicle to a “chop shop.” When that was unsuccessful, they purchased two cans of gasoline, drove to a remote location, and set the vehicle on fire. Then they walked to a payphone, and called Butts’ uncle to come pick them up and take them to retrieve Butts’ abandoned vehicle.

 

Wilson was tried, convicted and sentenced to death. Several of Wilson’s appeals have argued prosecutorial misconduct, as the prosecutor insisted that Wilson was the killer at Wilson’s trial and that Butts was the killer at Butts’s trial. Additionally, at Butts’s trial, several people testified that they had heard Butts confess to the killing.

 

Butts was also convicted and sentenced to death one year after Wilson. Butts was executed on May 4, 2018.

 

Please pray for peace and healing for the family of Donovan. Please pray for strength for the family of Marion WIlson, Jr. Please pray that if Marion is innocent, lacks the competency to be executed or should not be executed for any other reason, that evidence will be presented prior to his execution. Please pray that Marion may come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if he has not already.

 

  

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