Wednesday, November 29, 2023
Scheduled Executions

Oklahoma Reschedules Execution of Phillip Hancock to November 30, 2023

Phillip Hancock, Oklahoma

Updated: Monday, November 27, 2023

Phillip Hancock

Phillip Hancock is scheduled to be executed on Thursday, November 30, 2023, in McAlester, Oklahoma.  Fifty-nine-year-old Phillip is convicted of murdering 37-year-old Robert Jett and 57-year-old James Lynch on April 27, 2001.  For the last 21 years, Phillip has been on death row in Oklahoma.

Phillip Hancock grew up with an abusive biological father and a loving stepfather. His broth was disabled. At the age of 18, Phillip Hancock was convicted of manslaughter and served two and a half years in prison. He claimed it was self-defense. He also had several other felony convictions. While out of prison, he worked in construction.

On April 27, 2001, police responded to a report of shots being fired. Upon searching the area, they discovered Robert Jett lying on the ground in his backyard. Although he was moaning, he was unable to tell the police what happened. Inside Robert’s home, the body of James Vincent Lynch was discovered. He had been shot to death. Drugs and drug paraphernalia were found inside the home. The shooter had fled the scene.

Later that day, police identified a witness to the shooting, Shawn Tarp. Shawn was able to describe the shooter and his vehicle, but she did not the name of the shooter. After nearly 13 months, a private attorney approached the police and told them he believed Phillip Hancock killed Robert and James.

Hancock had been arrested and was in prison at the time. During his arrest, a gun had been taken from him. The gun was later determined to belong to Robert. When police went to talk to Hancock, he waived his Miranda rights and confessed to killing Robert and James. However, Hancock claimed the shootings were done in self-defense.

Shawn testified that Hancock had been at Robert’s house that night. A fight broke out between Robert and Hancock. Shawn fled to a bedroom, where she heard several gunshots and Robert pleading for his life. When she eventually emerged from her hiding spot, she discovered Hancock waiting for her. He apologized and told her she could live, but not to watch him leave.

Phillip Hancock was scheduled to be executed earlier this year on May 4, 2023.  His execution date was rescheduled, along with several others, at the request of Oklahoma Attorney General Gentner Drummond.  Drummond requested that the upcoming executions be rescheduled to allow more time between executions.  Oklahoma’s Department of Corrections is currently understaffed and preparing for an execution is time intensive.

Oklahoma Board of Pardons and Paroles has recommended that Phillip Hancock be granted clemency by a vote of 3-2.  Now it is up to Gov. Kevin Stitt to decide if clemency will be granted. In requesting clemency, Hancock argued that he should not be executed, as he was acting in self-defense at the time of the crime.

Please pray for the families of Robert Jett and James Lynch. Pray for strength for the family of Phillip Hancock. Pray that if Phillip is innocent, lacks the competency to be executed, or should not be executed for any other reason, that evidence will be provided before the execution. Please pray that Phillip may come to find peace through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

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