ATLANTA – The State Board of Pardons and Paroles has scheduled a clemency meeting for Tuesday in the case of Donnie Cleveland Lance. The meeting is being conducted for the Parole Board members to receive information for or against clemency for Lance. The meeting will begin at 9 a.m.
Lance is to be executed Wednesday for the 1997 murders of Sabrina Lance and Dwight Wood Jr. The Jackson County Superior Court ordered the execution, and the Georgia Department of Corrections scheduled it to take place at 7 p.m. at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in Jackson.
The Parole Board may grant clemency in a death penalty case, commuting or reducing the sentence to life with parole eligibility or to life without parole eligibility. The board may also issue a stay to consider the case further or deny clemency. In Georgia, the Parole Board has the sole constitutional authority to grant clemency in a death penalty case.
In addition to information received at the meeting, the board members will consider information contained in the case file maintained on Lance. The board maintains a comprehensive file on each death row inmate. The file contains background information on the condemned inmate, including the inmate’s criminal history and the circumstances of the crime(s) committed resulting in the death sentence.
A clemency decision by the board will be made prior to the scheduled execution.
The meeting will take place at the Parole Board’s central office in the East Tower of the Floyd Veterans Memorial Building, located at 2 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, S.E. in Atlanta. It is anticipated that the meeting will be closed as authorized by O.C.G.A. § 50-14-3 (a)(2). No public comment will be taken at this meeting, and no other business will be conducted.