Hundreds of Clergy Urge Courts to Not Execute Georgia Woman

Hundreds of clergy urged courts Sunday to spare the life of Kelly Renee Gissendaner, the only woman on Georgia's death row, whose plea of clemency has been rejected even though she earned a theology degree and transformed her life while in prison. Gissendaner, 47, is scheduled to die Monday for the 1997 stabbing death of her husband, Douglas Gissendaner. Her lawyers have argued that it is unfair to execute his client when it was her lover who actually killed her husband and he got life in prison instead of the death penalty. Other advocates — including the almost 400 clergy who signed Sunday's open letter to state and federal judges and elected officials — point to her acceptance of full responsibility and her graduation from the program for incarcerated women at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University, in which she became a teacher.

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