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EU Delegation Statement in Agreement with the EU Heads of Mission in the United States on Case of Romell Broom

“The European Union Delegation issues the following statement in agreement with the EU Heads of Mission in the Unites States:

On 16 March 2016, the Ohio Supreme Court considered the case of Romell Broom who had been sentenced to death in 1984 for the abduction, rape and murder of a 14‑year‑old girl and whose execution by a lethal injection had failed in September 2009. The Court inter alia ruled that a second execution attempt does not amount to a form of cruel and unusual punishment.  The ruling was reached with a majority of 4 – 3.

The EU is opposed to the use of capital punishment under any circumstance, and regardless of the nature of the crime. The death penalty is cruel and inhuman, and has not been shown in any way to act as a deterrent to crime. The EU considers that subjecting a person to a second attempt of lethal execution would be a particularly cruel and inhuman treatment, and would be a punishment in contradiction with basic human rights standards. We aim at the universal abolition of the death penalty and advocate for a global moratorium as a first step towards abolition. We therefore urge Governor Kasich to vacate the death sentence in the case of Romell Broom.


In 1984, Rommell Broom was sentenced to death for the abduction, rape and murder of 14‑year‑old Tryna Middleton. He had previously been convicted of other violent and sexual offences, including against children. A first attempt to execute him in 2009 failed. The circumstances of this attempt caused a furor and were, among other things, the subject of a documentary by Michael Verhoeven. A press statement by the Supreme Court can be found under