Scotland

Death Row Scot Kenny Richey wants to come home

Kenny Richey appears in court Image copyright AP

A Scot who spent 21 years facing execution in a prison in Ohio has said he wants to come home.

Kenny Richey, 51, was convicted of causing the death of a child in a fire, but was released on appeal in 2008.

He initially moved back to Edinburgh and had several brushes with the law before returning to the United States.

Speaking to BBC Radio Scotland, he said the break-up of his marriage and health problems have now left him homeless and penniless.

In an online post, Richey said: "After five heart attacks and a stroke, I find myself $40,000 in debt, no health or medical insurance and now homeless and desperate."

In 2012, he was sent back to jail for threatening a judge who had been involved in his initial trial over the child's death.

Last week, Richey was arrested in Mississippi for public intoxication.

Sleeping rough

He told Radio Scotland's Stephen Jardine programme: "Everything's gone downhill - everything's gone from bad to worse.

"For the past week I've been sleeping on the steps of a church.

"It seems that every time something good happens, something bad happens to destroy it."

Richey insisted he wanted to return "home" to Scotland to live out his last days.

He said: "I wouldn't mind finding some place quiet, maybe out in the countryside. Somewhere away from everybody. I'd be happy with that."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Kenny Richey says he wants to come back to Scotland to die

However, he also expressed pessimism at his chances of achieving financial help.

"I know the way most people are, especially towards me. Everybody in Scotland has made their mind up about me.

"I'm dying. I want to die in Scotland. Is there something wrong with that?"

Cynthia Collins

Richey was born in the Netherlands to an American father and a Scottish mother.

He moved to Edinburgh as a baby.

After his parents divorced, Richey moved to the US to live with his father in Ohio.

In 1987, after being discharged from the US Marines, Richey was convicted of killing two-year-old Cynthia Collins in a house fire.

Prosecutors claimed Richey had started the fire as a jealous attack on his former girlfriend and her new lover, who lived in the flat beneath.

He was sentenced to death.

There then followed 21 years of legal challenges and appeals before he was released after pleading "no contest" to attempted involuntary manslaughter and child endangering.

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