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The execution of Kevin Johnson

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Kevin Johnson was sentenced to death in 2007 for the slaying of a Kirkwood, Missouri, police officer. But an extensive investigation found the state’s handling of death-eligible prosecutions was rife with pervasive racial bias.

Kevin Johnson Jr. is scheduled to be executed today for the 2005 killing of a Kirkwood, Missouri, police officer.

A special prosecutor is urging the court to halt the execution after an extensive investigation that concluded the state’s handling of death-eligible prosecutions was rife with pervasive racial bias. Sarah Fenske, executive director of the River City Journalism Fund, spoke to KCUR's Brian Ellison about Johnson's case and how the racial composition of a jury can affect outcomes for defendants.

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Kansas City Today is hosted by Nomin Ujiyediin. It is produced by Byron Love and KCUR Studios and edited by Gabe Rosenberg and Lisa Rodriguez.

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As a newscaster and a host of a daily news podcast, I want to deliver the most important and interesting news of the day in an engaging and easily understandable way. No matter where you live in the metro or what you’re interested in, I want you to learn something from each newscast or podcast – and maybe even give you something to talk about at the dinner table. You can email me at nomin@kcur.org and find me on Twitter @NominUJ.
As an on-demand producer, I am focused on using my skills and experiences across multiple digital applications, platforms and media fields to create community focused audio, video and on-demand products for KCUR Studios. The media that I produce aims to inform, entertain and connect with the Kansas City metro area as we continue to learn from each other. Email me at byronlove@kcur.org.
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