Dak Prescott pleas for release of Oklahoma death row inmate
Today’s generation of athletes is now speaking out against social justice more than ever. Dallas Cowboys star quarterback Dak Prescott has sent a plea letter to Oklahoma governor Kevin Stitt and the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board for the release of Julius Jones.
Jones is a Black inmate sentenced to death for the murder of white businessman Paul Howell in 1999. TIME Magazine got a copy of the personal letter Prescott sent.
Dak Prescott writes:
“As a black man in this country right now,I experience injustices firsthand day in and day out, even as an athlete with ‘celebrity status… Current events are shining a much-needed light on deep-seated prejudices and systemic mistreatment of black people, and it is my sincere hope that the cultural movements of today will lead to significant social changes that will create a better tomorrow.”
The two-time Pro Bowler about to enter his fifth NFL season also held the public officials accountable for the issue and insists that only they have the direct power to address it:
“To that end, you all are in the unique position of being able to make a direct impact by addressing a specific miscarriage of justice… I implore you to right this wrong. Please don’t let another innocent black man die from the systemic mistreatment that has plagued our nation for far too long.”
Dak Prescott reiterates most of the sentiments against the trial: 1) that Jones’ first lawyers were incompetent for the case and 2) the admission of a jury member that the conviction was done out of “racial animus”.
The Dallas quarterback ends his letter by calling on the officials to consider the trial review:
“I ask for you to please do your part to help bring about this change by giving thoughtful and sincere consideration to your review of Julius Jones’ commutation application. My prayer is that he is able to salvage what remains of his life and that, through the righting of a decades-old wrong, he will be restored to his family soon.”
Dak Prescott is not the first high-profile celebrity to advocate for Jones’ case.
Viola Davis’ The Last Defense docu-series featured the case while Pistons’ Blake Griffin and Hawks’ Trae Young (former OU stars), Kings’ Buddy Hield, Rockets’ Russell Westbrook (former Thunder) have all written letters appealing for Jones.