Ronald Phillips was scheduled to be executed Thursday for the 1993 murder of 3-year-old Sheila Marie Evans. Ohio Governor John Kasich on Wednesday stayed his execution of Phillips to determine whether his non-vital organs or tissues can be donated to his mother or others.
Gov. Kasich's office said if Phillips is a viable donor, which they are currently awaiting results for, the procedures would be performed and he would return to death row with his new execution date.
3,500 people in Ohio and more than 120,000 nationally are on the list pending organ donations, said Marily Pongonis, a spokeswoman for the Lifeline of Ohio organ donation program.
"If another life can be saved by his willingness to donate his organs and tissues, then we should allow for that to happen," Kasich said.
Richard Dieter, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center, said that inmates waiting on death row have not been granted a delay of execution to accomodate non-vital organ donations before.
Image (via) Lifeline of Ohio.