Death Sentence Commuted for Sick Inmate

John Patrick Henretta, a death row inmate awaiting execution for the 1988 murder, rape, kidnapping and robbery of a Cleveland woman, had his sentence commuted after Judge Jon Kerry Blackwood determined his natural death is imminent. Blackwood also ruled that Henretta likely would not survive post-conviction proceedings given his “dire physical state,” the Times Free Press reports. Lawyers argued that execution would be cruel and unusual punishment given Henretta’s condition. According to a doctor who testified, Henretta suffers from high cholesterol, high blood pressure, skin cancer, prostate cancer, chronic hepatitis C, severe cirrhosis of the liver and a backup of blood into the intestinal wall and spleen.