Gov. Mary Fallin has appointed a longtime prosecutor to the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board following the death of a board member earlier this month.
Fallin on Friday named Patricia High as one of the governor's three appointments to the five-member board. High will complete the remainder of the term of the late Currie Ballard, who died on July 11.
High was a prosecutor for nearly 20 years in the Oklahoma County district attorney's office where she served as a special prosecutor on death penalty cases and was chief of the child abuse and sexual assault division.
The Pardon and Parole Board hopes a new Department of Corrections executive director will be receptive to their request to move clemency hearings to the Oklahoma State Penitentiary.
Interim Executive Director Tracy George reported Monday she recently had discussed the idea of moving the hearings from the Kate Barnard Community Corrections Center in Oklahoma City to the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester. Death row inmates are housed and executed at the maximum security facility in McAlester.
The board's five members were scheduled to go to trial in Oklahoma County District Court on Monday. But the board's chairman, Marc Dreyer of Tulsa, said Friday that prosecutors and defense attorneys have agreed to postpone the trial. No new date has been set.