Capital punishment is a complex and controversial issue, and this is by no means a complete examination of the subject.
Additional introductory remarks added 5/18/2019:
Execution is the most severe punishment inflicted by the U.S. government and its states and territories. It only takes a
moment to understand that the most severe punishment is reserved for the most ruthless, sadistic, and sociopathic criminals.
The reverse is also true, and serves as an illustration: The Medal of Honor is reserved for only those rare members of the military
services who exhibit the most conspicuous gallantry, usually in the face of grave danger and likely death. It is awarded by the
U.S. Congress and presented by the President himself. Its rarity and the great formality of the presentation ceremony reflect
the great honor given to America's finest. The medal also sends a signal to everyone else, that high honors come to honorable
men and women.
Now back to the other end of the spectrum: There are some crimes that must be punished in such a way as to deter others from
considering such behavior as one of life's options. There are also some criminals who, through a series of their own faulty
decisions, live a life of continual, habitual, and destructive criminal acts. In the most severe cases of murder, treason, piracy,
kidnapping, assassination, etc., usually after the convicted criminal has exhibited no remorse or penitence, the state brings
that person's life of crime to an end. This (as above) serves as a signal to everyone else, that bad things will happen
to bad people.
The deterrent effect of executions is diminished greatly if the likelihood of detection and arrest is small, or if the
punishment is delayed by years of imprisonment, due to endless appeals and a tiresome series of arguments about legal loopholes.
say never about executions. Democrat Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro has said he
would not sign any execution warrants while he was governor. He even called for the
Pennsylvania legislature to abolish the death penalty. Never say never, Governor. There
are exceptions to every rule. In this case, some people deserve the death penalty. The
responsibility of the government to determine who lives and who dies in capital crimes should never
be taken lightly. Innocent people have been imprisoned, and perhaps, executed. However,
the justice system in the United States, although it can move slowly, has lots of checks and
balances and that allow for plenty of time for innocent people to win their innocence.
However, there are people on death row who deserve to be there. Men and women with records
showing they are unrepentant criminals who committed an act heinous enough that multiple courts and
juries have decided that these people do not deserve to live.
Lawmakers Move Forward With Death Penalty for Pedophiles. Florida lawmakers are
poised to pass a measure that would permit the death penalty for pedophiles who sexually assault
children under 12 years old, a move that will likely trigger legal challenges and questions about
its constitutionality. The House will consider its version of the bill (HB 1297) on Thursday,
while the Senate version (SB 1342) was cleared by the Rules Committee on Tuesday, paving the way
for it to be presented to the full Senate.
senators introduce bipartisan bill to end death penalty. The death penalty could be
abolished in Ohio under upcoming bipartisan legislation announced Tuesday — the latest
in what has been years of effort to end capital punishment in the state. State senators from
both sides of the aisle called for an end to the practice, citing the financial blow to taxpayers
to keep an inmate on death row, the lack of lethal injection drugs that has led to an unofficial
moratorium on executions in the state, the danger of executing an innocent person and questions
over a state's right to end a life.
Becomes 5th State to Allow Firing Squad Option as Execution Method. Idaho
Gov. Brad Little signed legislation into law on Friday that added firing squads as an
alternative method of execution for the state's death-row inmates. The bill —
dubbed House Bill 186 — stipulates that the form of capital punishment will only be used
if the state is unable to obtain the drugs needed to perform lethal injections. "I have not
given up on the state's ability to require the chemicals," Little wrote in a transmittal letter
after signing the bill. "And, I believe the bill I signed into law last year helped expand
options that would not have been available without it."
new governor blows it on the death penalty. Democrat Pennsylvania governor Josh
Shapiro has said he will not sign any execution warrants while he is governor. He even called
for the Pennsylvania Legislature to abolish the death penalty. Never say never,
governor. There are exceptions to every rule. In this case, some people deserve the
death penalty. The responsibility of the government to determine who lives and who dies in
capital crimes should never be taken lightly.
a last act of inverted morality, Oregon's outgoing governor commutes death sentences for criminals, but not
babies. Oregon is (currently) one of the handful of states in the country that allows abortion through all
the months of pregnancy, and for any reason. Democrats hold majorities in both legislative chambers, and the
governor's seat, and with their lax approach towards the sacredness of humanity, one which results in "unrestricted"
abortion, they're rightfully pinpointed and labeled as belonging to the "party of death" — but it turns out
that's not entirely true. More accurately, the Democrats should be noted as the "party of innocent death."
Gov. Kate Brown Commutes all 17 of Oregon's Death Sentences. Kate Brown, Oregon's Democratic
governor, has commuted the sentences of the state's 17 death row inmates during her last month in office, changing the
prisoner's sentences to life in prison without the possibility of parole. This order, which takes effect on
Wednesday, has angered the victims' families as well as government officials. A prisoner has not been executed in
Oregon since 1997. In a statement, Brown explained the reasoning behind her new order. She said, "I have
long believed that justice is not advanced by taking a life, and the state should not be in the business of executing
people — even if a terrible crime placed them in prison."
The Editor says...
[#1] Did you get that? One of the leaders of the Abortion Party says, "justice is not advanced by taking a life."
[#2] Keep this in mind if you ever have to spend a week or two on jury duty in a capital murder trial: Years from now,
all your thought and deliberation could be thrown out the window by a left-wing governor.
Governor Commutes the Sentence of Every Death-Row Inmate in State. Oregon governor Kate Brown said Tuesday
that the state's 17 death-row inmates will be spared execution and will instead have their sentences downgraded to life
in prison without the possibility of parole. "I have long believed that justice is not advanced by taking a life,
and the state should not be in the business of executing people — even if a terrible crime placed them in
prison," the outgoing Democratic governor said in a statement. She added: "This commutation is not based on any
rehabilitative efforts by the individuals on death row. Instead, it reflects the recognition that the death
penalty is immoral. It is an irreversible punishment that does not allow for correction."
The Editor says...
I'm not inclined to listen to one of the leaders of the Abortion Party as she pontificates about what's immoral.
Which States Have
The Death Penalty? According to the Death Penalty Information Center, capital punishment is on the books in 27
states but several don't actually carry it out. [...] [I]n seven states, governors or courts have officially halted
executions. While governor-imposed moratoriums are in place in Oregon, California and Pennsylvania, judges have halted
executions in Nevada, Montana, Tennessee and South Carolina, mostly in response to controversy around new drugs used in
executions by injection. In the case of South Carolina, the state even reauthorized the use of the electric chair and
the firing squad in response to growing scrutiny by pharmaceutical companies and the public around how execution drugs are
sourced and used. The change has now being challenged in court while executions are on hold.
Carolina can now carry out firing-squad executions. The South Carolina Department of Corrections said Friday
that it can now carry out executions by firing squad in the state should death row inmates choose the method. The
department informed state Attorney General Alan Wilson on Friday that it had completed renovations on the death chamber at
the Broad River Correctional Institution and had established protocols, making it able to conduct such executions, according
to a news release. There are currently no scheduled executions in South Carolina. Executions there had been
paused until the state was able to accommodate the firing squad option.
Republicans Changing Their Tune on the Death Penalty? Are the days of capital punishment coming to an
end? It seems attitudes towards the death penalty, especially among conservatives, are changing. While capital
punishment has enjoyed overwhelming support from the right over the past few decades, many are rethinking their opinions on
the practice. [...] In Utah, state Rep. V. Lowry Snow and state Sen. Daniel McCay introduced a proposal to abolish
the state's death penalty and replace it with life imprisonment. This week, it advanced out of the Rules
Committee. McCay told Deseret News why he believes capital punishment is not a desirable method of punishment.
"It sets a false expectation for society, sets a false expectation for the victims and their families," he said, "and
increases the cost to the state of Utah and for states that still have capital punishment."
Quentin death row is laid to rest: 670 killers moved to general population. San Quentin death row — where
California's most macabre and twisted killers were once caged — is being shuttered and converted into a 'positive, healing
environment.' The prison ward is seeped in dark history dating back to March 3, 1893 when the first of 215 prisoners
was dropped to his death from a noose. It has since housed crazed, bloodthirsty serial killers including Charles Manson
and William Bonin, who murdered at least 21 young men and boys. It's the place where Richard 'the night stalker'
Ramirez was marched through in shackles after he was convicted of raping, torturing, and murdering at least 13 people in an
unspeakable rein of terror that paralyzed Southern California with fear.
Attorney General Merrick Garland orders halt on federal executions. US Attorney General Merrick Garland ordered
a halt on federal executions after telling officials that capital punishment is too arbitrary, disproportionately targets
people of color, and risks wrongly killing innocent people. Garland sent a memo to Department of Justice Officials
Thursday sharing his 'serious concerns' over federal executions, including the 'troubling number of exonerations' for people
sentenced to death. The AG's statement added: 'The Department of Justice must ensure that everyone in the federal
criminal justice system is not only afforded the rights guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States but is
also treated fairly and humanly.'
for the death penalty surges. A new Pew Research poll finds that 60 percent of Americans favor the death
penalty for people convicted of murder. This result is a stunning turnaround. Less than five years ago, Pew found
that only 49 percent of Americans favored the death penalty for convicted murderers. This was the lowest level of
support in more than four decades. The October 2016 poll showed 42 percent opposed to the death penalty. The
latest poll shows 39 percent opposed. So we have moved from a narrow 7 percentage point favorability margin to a
margin of 21 percentage points. What accounts for the difference? It must be the surge in violent crime,
Democrats call on Biden to commute all federal death sentences. A group of three dozen House Democrats signed a
letter Friday asking President Joe Biden to commute the death sentences of all federal death row inmates and work to
dismantle the form of punishment at the federal level. The plea comes on the heels of 13 executions carried out by the
Trump administration since July, a legacy the Democrats described as "one of carnage and unrestrained violence."
The Editor says...
One might examine the crimes committed by death row inmates to see actual examples of "carnage and unrestrained violence."
Punishment Must Be Enforced to Be Effective. [Scroll down] The reason is that capital punishment can be a
powerful deterrent only when it is actually enforced. And death for murder can become the rule, rather than the
extremely rare exception, only after the Supreme Court's death penalty jurisprudence has been swept away. A
constitutional amendment is the only practical means of doing that. This would not involve repealing the Eighth
Amendment's ban on "cruel and unusual punishments." Rather, it would involve restoring the Eighth Amendment to its original
meaning. That's what I argued four years before Donald Trump was sworn into office. That's what I have believed
ever since. Over the last four years, in a series of articles for American Greatness, I developed the theme.
federal rule to allow other methods of execution besides lethal injection. The Justice Department is changing
its execution protocols, so that federal executions are no longer required to be done by lethal injection only. The
amended rule, as reported by the AP, allows the government to use lethal injection or "any other manner prescribed by the law
of the state in which the sentence was imposed." The rule was published in the Federal Register on Friday [11/27/2020].
Those other manners include "electrocution, inhaling nitrogen gas or death by firing squad." The amended rule goes into
effect on Dec. 24 and comes as the DOJ has scheduled five executions during this lame-duck period.
Web of Lies: China Promised to Stop Organ Harvesting. Here's What It's Been Doing Behind Closed
Doors. In 2005, I was astounded to hear from a patient who was a candidate for a heart transplant, and who had
been hospitalized for a year in my department at the Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, that he had received an offer from
his insurance company to fly to China and undergo the surgical procedure there, on a specified date within two weeks. A
necessary precondition for a heart transplant is the donor's demise on the day of the surgery, which obviously is not an
event whose date is known weeks in advance. My astonishment only increased when the patient did in fact make the trip
to China and had the transplant on the promised day. He was the first Israeli to have a heart transplant in this
way. Intrigued by the case, I started investigating the subject of organ transplants in China. I discovered that
as early as 1984 a secret law had been promulgated there allowing the organs of persons condemned to death to be harvested
for transplants. The law, whose existence gradually leaked out, is contrary to all international law and ethical
procedures, which absolutely prohibit the use of organs of individuals who have been executed. Indeed, even asking a
condemned person to agree to become an organ donor after his or her death is forbidden. Nevertheless, the law spawned a
flourishing industry in China worth billions of dollars to the state and other players, involving tens of thousands of
procedures a year, based on the sale to transplant tourists of organs of people sentenced to death.
Court refuses to allow federal executions carry on — for now. The Supreme Court denied the Trump
administration's request to override a district court ruling halting federal executions that were scheduled for this
week. The order, issued Friday, allows the litigation to carry on at the federal appeals court for now while the
executions are stalled.
Court temporarily blocks Trump administration request to resume federal executions. The Supreme Court on Friday [12/6/2019]
blocked the Trump administration from resuming federal executions in an attempt to put to death four convicted murderers.
The executions were slated to begin next week. The justices upheld a lower court ruling imposed last month after inmates
claimed executions by lethal injection would violate federal law. U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan in Washington, D.C.,
had imposed a temporary injunction on executions, saying they would conflict with federal law. That ruling was upheld
Monday by a three-judge federal appeals court.
Sirhan goes under the knife. Earlier this year, [Governor Gavin] Newsom reprieved all 737 murderers on
California's death row. These were the worst of the worst, including Luis Bracamontes, who gunned down two police
officers in Sacramento in 2014 and said he wished he'd killed more cops. Also gaining a reprieve was "Tool Box Killer"
Lawrence Bittaker, who raped and killed five teenage girls in 1979 after torturing them with pliers and screwdrivers.
Had Sirhan Sirhan been on death row, the Kennedy killer would also have gained a reprieve. In California, any assassin
can take the life of any innocent victim, including a presidential candidate, and be sure of keeping his or her own life.
Promises Fast Track for Federal Death Penalty. The Trump administration is pushing for legislation that would
accelerate certain federal death penalty cases. The new legislation is expected around Labor Day, according to Attorney
General William P. Barr, and will specifically expedite the use of the death penalty for offenders who murder police
officers or commit mass murders.
pushes capital punishment in wake of shootings. Buried in Paragraph 8 was the guts of his proposal. It
said, "The president also called for cultural changes, citing violent video games. Further, Trump said he has directed
the Justice Department to propose legislation ensuring that those commit hate crimes and mass murders 'face the death penalty
and that this capital punishment be delivered quickly, decisively, and without years of needless delay.'" Now we get to
the specifics. President Trump wants to empty death row the right way. Executions work as a deterrent to crime
only if they are swift. 20-year delays make a joke of such sentences. He just made them an offer they cannot
accept. Any deal Democrats and their RINO friends want to make will have to include hanging killers. The
president tiptoed around Fake Conservatives who want him to cave on gun control.
General William Barr orders first federal executions in nearly two decades. The federal government will resume
executing death row inmates after nearly two decades without doing so, the Department of Justice announced Thursday [7/25/2019].
Attorney General William Barr directed the Bureau of Prisons to schedule the executions of five inmates convicted of murder and other
crimes. The executions have been scheduled for December 2019 and January 2020. The department also announced a new execution
protocol, replacing the three-drug cocktail previously used in federal executions with the single drug, pentobarbital.
Blasts Dem Nominees Over Death Penalty Criticism. Republican Sen. Tom Cotton (Ar.) blasted presidential
hopefuls Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Ma.) and South Bend mayor Pete Buttigieg for their criticisms of the death penalty.
Warren and Buttigieg denounced the news that the DOJ would resume executing federal death row inmates, which marked an end to a
16-year gap during which no federal executions occurred. "Our criminal justice system has a long history of mistakes when
it comes to capital punishment — especially when it comes to Black and Brown people," Warren wrote on Twitter.
"We cannot let a broken system decide the fate of incarcerated Americans. I oppose the death penalty."
The Editor says...
I'm opposed to putting people to death, too, but not as much as I'm opposed to feeding and housing murderers and other violent and habitual felons
for decades after their crimes. Assuming that's they're caught, convicted, and sent to death row, which is assuming a lot.
Department says it will Resume federal capital punishment after nearly two-decade break. he U.S. Justice
Department has scheduled the execution of five death-row federal inmates, after Attorney General William Barr announced he
has reinstated the federal government's use of capital punishment after a nearly two-decade hiatus. 'Congress has expressly
authorized the death penalty through legislation adopted by the people's representatives in both houses of Congress and
signed by the President,' Barr said in a statement on Thursday [7/25/2019].
we want these people alive: Re-instating the Federal Death Penalty. Regardless of how you feel about the
death penalty, it is hard to argue that it would be a better place if Timothy McVeigh was still breathing. Even if
behind bars. Some may argue that life in a concrete and metal cell measured in feet is a far worse sentence. The
last person the federal government executed was Louis Jones, Jr., a US Army soldier who was killed following his conviction
of rape and murder of Pvt. Tracie McBride, a soldier. His lawyers argued that due to sexual abuse as a child and
PTSD as a decorated war veteran, he was not responsible for his action. This was in 2003 and under President George W.
Bush. (Should Louis Jones Die? — Newsweek) But that is all about to change.
Common-Sense Ruling on Death Penalty Drugs. If there's one thing that tells you government in America is too
big and unaccountable, it's when one branch of government stops another government from doing what it was set up to do, even
if it's not the first agency's job. Case in point: Under President Barack Obama, the Food and Drug Administration
stopped multiple states from carrying out executions because the agency had not approved the drugs they intended to use for
lethal injection. Really. President Donald Trump's Department of Justice is changing that.
to bar all chaplains from execution chambers. Texas prisons have amended their policy to disallow all chaplains
from the execution chamber following two controversial high-profile cases, according to the Texas Tribune. Last week,
the U.S. Supreme Court halted the execution of Patrick Murphy, who had been sentenced to death for his part in the 2000
murder of an Irving, Texas, police officer, because he had not been given access to a Buddhist chaplain. Only prison
employees are allowed in the chamber and the state only employs Christian and Muslim clerics as prison chaplains. The
high court ruled that this constituted religious discrimination and gave the state the option of allowing chaplains of all
religions or banning them from the chamber entirely.
Death Penalty Decision Causes [Concern] On The Left. Personally, I'm opposed to the death penalty. That
opposition is based on two things. First, the time lag from conviction to execution is typically one or more decades.
That, to me, negates the deterrent or even the retributive aspects and reduces it to being mauled to death by DMV clerks.
Second, the bone-deep corruption in our justice system which routinely uncovers prosecutors knowingly convicting people on the
most flimsy of evidence and elected prosecutors using tough sentencing as a campaign tool doesn't make me want to give this
system the power to take a life. Combine these two together and I'm basically against the idea.
The Editor says...
I disagree. The delay between conviction and execution is almost entirely due
to lawyers, who make their living by searching for loopholes and technicalities.
In China, the condemned inmate is taken away to his execution immediately upon conviction. In a way, that's more humane, because
one would spend a lot less time dreading the inevitable. Whether one dies on Death Row from old age, from lethal injection,
or at the hands of another inmate, one lives in certainty that escape is impossible. Secondly, I find it difficult to believe that
anyone in this century has been sentenced to death based upon flimsy evidence. Most of the people who get the death penalty have
lengthy criminal records and probably deserved execution long before they were finally sent to death row.
executes a 'moratorium' on the death penalty. During the past eight years, California voters have twice
reiterated their support for the death penalty by defeating propositions seeking to overturn it. If anyone was confused
about Californians' understanding of the death penalty representing an important part of justice, in 2016 they even passed a
proposition calling for the speeding up of executions by shortening the decades-long appeals process. In other words,
Californians want the death penalty, and they want to it happen faster and more often.
Newsom Doesn't Care about Crime Victims. On March 13, California governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive
order granting a reprieve to all 737 convicted murderers awaiting execution in the Golden State. [...] All 737 reprieved
death-row inmates had been found guilty of murder by a jury of their peers, beyond any reasonable doubt. The convicted
murderers had also exhausted all the possibilities of the appeal process, which in the California criminal justice system is
quite extensive. Gavin Newsom is not an attorney and not a judge. The governor did not attend the trials and
produced no new exculpatory evidence in any of the cases. Those awaiting execution include Richard Allen Davis, who
kidnapped and killed twelve-year-old Polly Klaas, and "Tool Box Killer" Lawrence Bittaker, who raped and killed five teen
girls in 1979 after torturing them with pliers and screwdrivers.
Killing the Death Penalty via
Edict. To my conservative friends who like when chief executives push the envelope on "national emergencies"
and executive orders, I offer you California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Last week, he grabbed national headlines for his
decision to grant reprieves to all 737 prisoners on California's death row based on his own personal feelings: [...]
Governors have the power to pardon people and give reprieves. But just as advocates for limited government believe that
presidents should let Congress take the lead on spending matters, they too should prefer that governors stick to the spirit
and not just the letter of the law. Such reprieves are meant for particular cases — not as a means to change
reprieve may not be the news Death Row inmates want to hear. One should stay out of prison, but if you have to
serve a long sentence, California's Death Row is not a bad option, compared to the main line in the 35 institutions run by
the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. That's why Gov. Gavin Newsom's reprieve for the 723 men and
22 women on Death Row is not the news the condemned may want to hear.
Newsom to order halt to California's death penalty. Gov. Gavin Newsom is suspending the death penalty in California,
calling it discriminatory and immoral, and is granting reprieves to the 737 condemned inmates on the nation's largest Death Row.
"I do not believe that a civilized society can claim to be a leader in the world as long as its government continues to sanction the
premeditated and discriminatory execution of its people," Newsom said in a statement accompanying an executive order, to be issued
Wednesday [3/13/2019], declaring a moratorium on capital punishment in the state. "The death penalty is inconsistent with our
bedrock values and strikes at the very heart of what it means to be a Californian."
injection or gas? Alabama's death row gets to choose. Some say inhaling nitrogen gas would be like dying
on a plane that depressurizes in flight, swiftly killing all aboard. Now more than a quarter of Alabama's death row
inmates have signed statements saying they would prefer that gas over lethal injection or the electric chair when facing execution.
Francis Is Woefully Wrong about the Death Penalty. Pope Francis has amended the Catechism of the Catholic
Church to reject the death penalty. Whether this is an appropriate Catholic stance is for Catholics to decide.
But the complete elimination of the death penalty would undermine the social order of modern states, in my view. The
Hebrew Bible prescribes the death penalty for murder and — unlike most pre-modern societies and many Muslim
countries today — prohibits the payment of wergild. An eye and a tooth can be requited by monetary
compensation (that was the meaning of "an eye for an eye"), but not a life. The rabbis of the Second Temple period set
an extremely high hurdle for the death penalty and declared that a court that ordered a single execution in a hundred years
should be considered cruel.
Francis Rewrites Catholicism ... and the Bible. Pope Francis, the product of Latin American liberation
theology — along with many other Catholic religious and lay leaders — is remaking Catholicism in the
image of leftism, just as mainstream Protestant leaders have been rendering much of mainstream Protestantism a branch of
leftism, and non-Orthodox Jewish clergy and lay leaders have been rendering most non-Orthodox synagogues and lay institutions
left-wing organizations. The notion that it is immoral to execute any murderer — no matter how heinous the
murder, no matter how many innocents he has murdered, no matter how incontrovertible the proof of guilt — is an
expression of emotion, not of reason or natural law or Christian theology or biblical theology. Regarding the latter,
the biblical commandment to put premeditated murderers to death is unique. First, it is fundamental to biblical morality.
Invokes Pope in Advancing Legislation to Abolish Death Penalty. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D.) announced
this week he would advance a bill to abolish the death penalty in the state "in solidarity with Pope Francis." Pope
Francis decreed on Thursday [8/2/2018] that the death penalty was "inadmissible" in all cases, and the Catholic Church would
work "with determination" to see the practice ended around the world. Church doctrine formerly accepted the death
penalty in some instances if was "the only practicable way" to defend life. Cuomo, who penned an op-ed against capital
punishment in 2004 for the New York Times, tweeted out a story about the Vatican's decision along with his own announcement.
Francis and Capital Punishment. In a move that should surprise no one, Pope Francis has once again appeared to
contradict two millennia of clear and consistent scriptural and Catholic teaching. [...] There has always been disagreement
among Catholics about whether capital punishment is, in practice, the morally best way to uphold justice and social order.
However, the Church has always taught, clearly and consistently, that the death penalty is in principle consistent with both
natural law and the Gospel. This is taught throughout scripture — from Genesis 9 to Romans 13 and many points
in between — and the Church maintains that scripture cannot teach moral error. [...] If capital punishment is wrong in
principle, then the Church has for two millennia consistently taught grave moral error and badly misinterpreted scripture.
Brother, NAACP Call for End to Death Penalty. A representative from the NAACP joined other activists to advocate for
the abolition of the death penalty, referring to capital punishment as "state-sponsored violence." "This is a modern-day human
rights issue that felt really solvable as a law student, like, we can just get rid of this, right? We don't need this.
Let's move forward and get rid of this and move on to some other human rights issues — that's kind of how I found myself
representing people who are on death row," Ngozi Ndulue, senior director of criminal justice programs at the NAACP, said during a
vigil to abolish the death penalty recently organized by Death Penalty Action at the Supreme Court.
Most Americans favor the death penalty. The Pew Research Center has released a poll showing that 54 percent of
Americans favor the death penalty for people convicted of murder. That's up from 49 percent two years ago. (As Kent
Scheidegger has explained, this number understates opposition to abolishing the death penalty, but I'm focused here on the
trend). The death penalty has always had the support of a plurality of Americans. However, that support declined
dramatically in the past 20 years. In 1996, 78 percent of Americans supported it compared to only 18 who
opposed it. Today, the split is 54-39.
A Leftist Core
Belief: Denying Evil. With thousands of black people being shot in leftist-run cities, leftists act as though the killings
aren't the work of a few evil men and hence should be addressed not by vigorous law enforcement, but by gun control and telling blacks their
situation is all due to white racism. This despite the fact that the average black resident of the Democrat-created ghettos is an honest
person who doesn't go around shooting people. Leftists also believe that we're too hard on criminals. Leftists are constantly
advocating for criminals' "rights" and support the idea that letting obviously guilty criminals loose based on legal technicalities that throw
out irrefutable evidence of guilt is a good thing. Leftists have a bizarre attitude toward murderers, rapists, and drug-dealers because
leftists believe that criminals aren't really evil or responsible for their actions. Rather, leftists argue that societal pressures, poor
upbringing, etc. are the cause of crime — even though this flies in the face of the reality that most people who suffer from the problems that
leftists cite as causing crime don't become criminals.
demand death penalty for cops who commit assault, murder. Several House Democrats have introduced legislation
that would subject state and local police to the death penalty if they are found guilty or assault or murder. The
Police Accountability Act, from Rep. Hank Johnson, D-Ga., is one of the Democrats' answers to the police brutality that
they say still plagues black Americans around the country. His bill would subject police to the death penalty when cops
commit certain crimes that already trigger the death penalty in other circumstances. Johnson, who has introduced this
bill in prior Congresses, said it's needed because police cannot be put above the law.
Crime, and Freedom. In January, I took up Donald Trump's extraordinary promise to bring the crime and violence
we know today to a quick end. I argued that this seemingly impossible vow can be fulfilled, but only by dramatically
increasing the speed and certainty with which murderers are put to death.
DoJ Releases First Estimate of Number of Foreigners
Held in Federal Prisons: Over 45,000. This is the first time we've troubled ourselves to attempt a
first-pass count — we count everything in this country. We have whole sections of government devoting to
counting every thing in America — air conditioners, cars, gay and transgender students at risk, etc. The
only things we don't count are the things the Ruling Class doesn't want the public to know the numbers on.
DOJ: One in Four Federal Inmates
Is Foreign-Born. The Justice Department published statistics on the prison population to comply with directives in President Donald
Trump's January executive order overhauling the immigration system. The foreign-born prison population as of March 25 totals 45,493, or
24 percent of all federal inmates. Of that group, 3,939 now are American citizens. That leaves 41,554 inmates who remain citizens
of foreign countries. Some 22,541 of them, or 54.4 percent, have final orders to be deported once they've completed their sentences.
Another 33.4 percent, 13,886, are under investigation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents for possible deportation.
judge backs firing squads, guillotine for executions. A controversial federal judge thinks firing squads and
guillotines should come back in style as the debate over executions in Arkansas rages on. Ninth Circuit Appeals Judge
Alex Kozinski, in an interview with CBS News' "60 Minutes" set to air Sunday, said conducting lethal injections is a sham
that masks that fact that people are getting killed.
Opponents Are Being Dishonest in Their Arguments. Consider the April 17 broadcast of Fox News Channel's
Special Report with Bret Baier. Casey Stegall reported on the legal battle in Arkansas, where officials want to
execute eight death-row inmates in eleven days before their supply of midazolam expires. This is one of the drugs used
to carry out lethal injections. Stegall did his legwork. He talked to Susan Khani, the daughter of the woman
murdered, execution-style, by Don Davis in 1990. She told Stegall the last quarter century has been agony for her,
adding: "He is just a very cruel person. He needs to be put to death." Stegall then talked to the usual
Penalty Opponents are Being Dishonest in Their Arguments. Casey Stegall reported on the legal battle in
Arkansas, where officials want to execute eight death row inmates in 11 days before their supply of midazolam expires.
This is one of the drugs used to carry out lethal injections. Stegall did his legwork. He talked to Susan Khani,
the daughter of the woman murdered, execution-style, by Don Davis in 1990. She told Stegall the last quarter century has been
agony for her, adding, "He is just a very cruel person. He needs to be put to death."
Casts First Major Tie-Breaking Vote Allowing Arkansas Executions To Proceed. In what will undoubtedly be a
memorable first major tie-breaking vote as a Supreme Court Judge, Neil Gorsuch cast the deciding vote last night to allow
Arkansas to begin executing a group of 8 death-row inmates. The decision came after attorneys for the State of Arkansas
sought an expedited process to allow for the executions to proceed before their lethal-injection drugs expire at the end of April.
Supreme Court bars judge who joined protests from hearing death penalty cases. A state judge who railed against
the death penalty at protest rallies while he blocked executions in his courtroom ran afoul of the Arkansas Supreme Court on
Monday [4/17/2017] as the legal fight over a planned spate of executions continued into the night. The state high court
barred Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Wendell Griffen from hearing cases involving executions, capital punishment and the
state's lethal injection protocol, then referred him to the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission.
Judge Griffen lost the battle, but he may have won the war: The Arkansas high court also granted stays of execution to
the two convicted murderers scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection Monday, Bruce Ward and Don Davis.
Supreme Court Bars Judge Wendell Griffen from Death Penalty Cases. The Arkansas Supreme Court is taking action
against Pulaski County Circuit Court Judge Wendell Griffen. The high court ruled early Monday afternoon that Judge
Griffen be barred from hearing any death penalty, execution or drug protocol cases. The decision follows Griffen's
protest Friday outside the Governor's Mansion against the scheduled executions.
multiple execution plan unravels after rulings. Arkansas' plan to execute eight men by the end of the month
appeared to be unraveling on Friday, with a judge blocking a lethal injection drug use and the state's highest court granting
a stay to one of the first inmates who had been scheduled for execution. Judge Wendell Griffen of the Pulaski County
Circuit issued a temporary ruling that prohibits Arkansas from using its supply of vecuronium bromide after a company said it
had sold the drug to the state for medical purposes, not capital punishment.
Supreme Court Plays Fast and Loose with the Eighth Amendment. To honor the human dignity of those who refuse to
honor the human dignity of others is an absurdity than destroys the very concept of human dignity. Civil society is
grounded in the mutual recognition of the human dignity of fellow citizens. To use the language of the Declaration:
all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Those who fail to honor the obligation to recognize the humanity of others — their rights and liberties — have
voluntarily withdrawn from the social compact that constitutes civil society. Once they have demonstrated they no longer
have obligations to society, society no longer has obligations to them, except that American society has pledged always to extend
due process rights and protection from cruel and unusual punishment.
Soros-backed prosecutor yanked after refusing to seek death penalty for cop killer. A Florida prosecutor
elected with $1 million from liberal billionaire George Soros has been removed from all first-degree murder cases after
refusing to seek the death penalty for any suspect, including an accused cop killer. State Attorney Aramis Ayala, who
won an upset victory in November after receiving $1.38 million from the Soros-backed Florida Safety & Justice PAC, had 21
first-degree murder cases in Orange and Osceola counties reassigned Monday to other prosecutors by Florida Gov. Rick
Scott, a Republican. His executive order came after she announced she would not seek the death penalty against Markeith
Loyd, who has been charged in the murders of his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sade Dixon in December and Orlando police Lt. Debra
Clayton in January, or any other defendants.
Scott takes 21 murder cases from Orlando prosecutor who won't seek death penalty. Gov. Rick Scott took 21
first-degree murder cases away from Orlando-area State Attorney Aramis Ayala after she said she would not seek the death
penalty in any cases. "Each of these cases I am reassigning represents a horrific loss of life," Scott said in a
statement Monday. "The families who tragically lost someone deserve a state attorney who will take the time to review
every individual fact and circumstance before making such an impactful decision."
Attorney Aramis Ayala won't seek death penalty while in office. While discussing the Markeith Loyd case Thursday [3/16/2017], State
Attorney Aramis Ayala said she will not seek the death penalty during her administration. Ayala said she made the decision after conducting
a review. The most visible case immediately affected by Ayala's decision is Loyd's, who is charged with killing Orlando police Lt. Debra
Clayton and his pregnant ex-girlfriend. Ayala's statement was made during a news conference she called to discuss her decision not to seek
the death penalty in the Loyd case.
Arkansas plans to execute
8 men over 10 days. Eight men are scheduled to be executed by lethal injection in Arkansas in the space of just
10 days, according to Gov. Asa Hutchinson's office. The state — which has not put anyone to death for
11 years — plans to execute the men in pairs between April 17 and April 27. So many executions in
such a short amount of time is "unprecedented" in the United States, said a spokesman for a group that monitors US executions.
Bring back the firing
squads. Liberals pushed us away from hangings and firing squads to the electric chair, which they then said was
cruel, to gas chambers, which they then said was cruel, to lethal injections, which they then said was cruel and whose
chemicals are no longer sold. Mississippi wants to bring back firing squads. Good.
may become fourth state to revamp execution method. Mississippi lawmakers want to bring back the firing squad,
electric chair and gas chamber as execution methods, a step three other states have taken recently, but for a different
reason. Oklahoma reintroduced the gas chamber, Utah the firing squad and Tennessee the electric chair in response to a
nationwide scarcity of lethal injection drugs for death row inmates. Mississippi legislator Andy Gipson said he
introduced House Bill 638 in response to lawsuits filed by "liberal, left-wing radicals" challenging the use of lethal
injection drugs as cruel and unusual punishment.
Clarke: All Cop Killers Should Get the Death Penalty. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke says that
every murder of a law enforcement officer should be classified as a capital crime punishable by death. [...] Sheriff Clarke
argued that every cop killer should receive the death penalty, even in states that don't have capital punishment.
"Progressives". Murderers may in some cases have had unhappy childhoods, but there is absolutely nothing that anybody can do to
change their childhoods after they are adults. The most that can be done is to keep murderers from committing more murders, and to deter
others from committing murder. People on the left who want to give murderers "another chance" are gambling with the lives of innocent
people. That is one of many other examples of the cruel consequences of seemingly compassionate decisions and policies. Ironically,
people on the left who are preoccupied with the presumably unhappy childhoods of murderers, which they can do nothing about, seldom show similar
concern about the present and future unhappy childhoods of the orphans of people who have been murdered. Such inconsistencies are not
peculiar to our time, though they seem to be more pervasive today. But the left has been trying, for more than 200 years, to
mitigate or eliminate punishments in general, and capital punishment in particular.
7 Ugliest Propositions on the California Ballot. [For example,] Prop. 62 — The death penalty for
the death penalty. This is as straightforward as it sounds. If you think California shouldn't have a death
penalty for those who commit the most heinous acts of premeditated violence, often with deadly outcomes, then vote yes.
If you believe, as I do, that these worst-of-the-worst criminals should have to pay the ultimate price for their acts, then
to seek reinstatement of death penalty in New Mexico. Gov. Susana Martinez said Wednesday she intends to
seek reinstatement of New Mexico's death penalty. Martinez's announcement comes in the aftermath of Friday's shooting
death of Hatch police Officer Jose Chavez. Chavez, 33, was killed during a traffic stop. The state of New Mexico
has charged Jesse Denver Hanes, 38, of Columbus, Ohio, with killing Chavez. If convicted of murder in the state case,
Hanes faces life in prison. Hanes also faces charges at the federal level, but those charges wouldn't warrant the death
penalty, Elizabeth Martinez with the U.S. Attorney's Office told KVIA. Hanes is also wanted in Ohio in connection to the July
shooting death of 62-year-old Theodore Timmons. Ohio does have the death penalty.
Pharmaceutical Giant Just
Declared War on the Death Penalty. U.S. firm Pfizer officially withdrew from the lethal injection trade on
Friday, announcing it will no longer supply medicines for use in death row executions. The global giant announced its
commitment to block all sales for that purpose in a move reflecting growing opposition to the death penalty in the U.S. [...]
Fewer states sentence people to death now, and those that still do are doing so less often. In total, 19 states
have abolished the primitive act, and it's no secret the European-led boycott of medical drugs — used by U.S.
corrections departments to execute prisoners — has had a startling impact.
Death Sentence in Louisiana Rarely Means You'll be Executed. Four out of five death sentences in Louisiana since 1976 have been
reversed. And for every three executions the state carried out, one death row prisoner was exonerated. These statistics are among
the most notable in an analysis of the death penalty in Louisiana, published this week by Tim Lyman, an independent researcher, and Frank
Baumgartner, a political scientist at the University of North Carolina who has crunched similar numbers in Florida, Ohio, and Missouri.
political compromise to fix Florida's death penalty law. In an effort to keep Florida's death penalty from a barrage of legal attacks after
a Supreme Court decision halted executions, state lawmakers have reached a compromise that would allow the Sunshine State to continue executions.
The Supreme Court ruled in January that the state's method of sentencing people to death was unconstitutional because it weighed power too heavily toward
judges over juries. The nation's highest court found the state's sentencing procedure was flawed because juries play only an advisory role, while
the judge makes the key decisions and can find differently from the jury.
Reading for Conservatives Who Oppose the Death Penalty. Does the death penalty bring about justice? To many citizens,
the answer is yes, absolutely. When someone takes the life of another or several others in a wanton, cruel, and malicious way,
nothing less than the forfeiture of the killer's life brings justice. Life for a life (or many lives) taken. Does the death
penalty bring about safety? Yes, for sure. Executed killers will never claim new victims. They are completely incapacitated,
something life without parole cannot guarantee. And executions, beyond a doubt, deter others from committing murder. How many depends
on a variety of circumstances, but to claim there is no (zero) deterrence brought about via execution of the guilty is completely absurd.
Oklahoma delays executions until at
least 2016. No executions will be scheduled in Oklahoma until at least next year as the attorney general's office investigates
why the state used the wrong drug during a lethal injection in January and nearly did so again last month, the office said Friday [10/16/2015].
highest court BANS death penalty in the state — sparing the lives of 11 men. Connecticut's highest
court has overturned the state's death penalty — meaning the two men convicted in the brutal murders of the Petit
family will no longer be executed for their crimes. In a 4-3 ruling on Thursday [8/13/2015], Connecticut Supreme Court declared
that the death penalty was unconstitutional, sparing the lives of the 11 men currently on death row in the town of Somers.
case for the death penalty. [Scroll down] Those who would eliminate the death
penalty also might reflect on notorious mass murderer Richard Speck, who viciously raped and
murdered eight student nurses in Chicago in 1966. His death sentence was overturned, and he
ended up with a life sentence. Years later he admitted to a journalist that he enjoyed getting
high in prison, and later a videotape would turn up that showed Speck using drugs, having sex with
another inmate and displaying $100 bills. He said, "If they only knew how much fun I was having,
they'd turn me loose." He also described strangling the nurses and joked, "It just wasn't their
night." He would die of a heart attack after 25 years in prison, a stint he seemed to have enjoyed.
of Planned Parenthood. Mitchelle Blair, not knowing what to do with the bodies of two
of her children, whom she had murdered, stuffed them in her freezer. She'd tortured them for months
first — strangling them, suffocating them with plastic bags until they passed out, starving them,
burning them with boiling water. She said she killed her son by accident; she'd intended to torture him
further. Her daughter she killed on purpose. "If I had the chance to do it again, I would," the
mother said. Pleading guilty, she asked the court to impose the death penalty on her. Prosecutors
regretfully informed her that Michigan has no death penalty.
Court upholds use of drug implicated in botched executions. The Supreme Court upheld
the use of a controversial drug in lethal injection executions Monday [6/29/2015], as two dissenting
justices said for the first time that they think it's "highly likely" that the death penalty itself
is unconstitutional. The justices voted 5-4 in a case from Oklahoma that the sedative midazolam can be
used in executions without violating the Eighth Amendment prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment.
The Battle for Death
Penalty Transparency. Americans may shudder at the barbarity depicted in videos showing
public executions by the governments of Iran, Saudi Arabia, and China, but the fact remains that alone
among all Western countries, the United States is a death penalty country. Though the death penalty
is legal in the majority of American states, only a handful of them actually carry out executions,
numbering in the few dozens annually. Part of the reason the American public maintains a steadfast
support of its government killing convicted murderers is due to the cloak of secrecy covering executions
and the fact that the most common form of execution, lethal injection, is sold to the public as a
medical procedure, akin to putting a sick animal to sleep.
senators override governor's veto, repeal death penalty. Nebraska has repealed the
death penalty following a dramatic vote Wednesday [5/27/2015] by state lawmakers to override the
governor's veto. The high-stakes vote to override the veto of Legislative Bill 268 was 30-19.
It requires at least 30 of 49 senators to overturn a gubernatorial veto.
stance on death penalty appears to be shifting. Nebraska's Republican-dominated Legislature is making a
concerted push to do away with the state's death penalty, the latest sign of cracks in conservatives' once-bedrock
support for capital punishment. When lawmakers voted 30-13 vote [sic] to repeal the state's death penalty last
week, Republicans delivered 17 of the votes in favor of the measure, outnumbering the 13 votes Republicans cast
against it, according to The Wall Street Journal. GOP Gov. Pete Ricketts has vowed to veto the bill.
gov signs bill allowing firing squad. Utah became the only state to allow firing
squads for executions Monday when Gov. Gary Herbert signed a law approving the controversial
method's use when no lethal-injection drugs are available.
Brain Injury Matters In Death Row Cases. Cecil Clayton was executed Tuesday [3/17/2015] by the
state of Missouri. At 74 years old, Clayton was the state's oldest death row inmate. He landed on
death row after he murdered a police officer, Christopher Castetter, who was dispatched to a house where Clayton
had broken in, back in 1996. [...] Three different medical doctors declared Clayton incompetent after he was
sentenced to death. This is problematic, as the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2002 (Atkins v Virginia)
that it was unconstitutional to execute an intellectually disabled individual by the Eighth Amendment, prohibition
of cruel and unusual punishment.
squad bill passes the Senate, heads to governor for signature. The [Utah] Senate
passed a bill that would bring back the firing squad in Utah as a method of execution. In an
18-10 vote, the Senate approved House Bill 11, sponsored by Rep. Paul Ray, R-Clearfield, which would
bring the firing squad back as a backup method of execution, should the primary method of lethal injection
Pennsylvania Stops Using
the Death Penalty. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf said Friday [2/13/2015] that the state has
effectively put a moratorium on the death penalty. While Wolf awaits a report from a task force on
the state's use of capital punishment, he will grant temporary reprieves for all death row inmates whose
executions are scheduled.
considers nitrogen gas chamber to execute death row inmates. Following the state's
botched lethal injection last spring, in which the inmate groaned and writhed on the gurney before a
problem was discovered, the state is exploring using a nitrogen gas chamber which would make the
execution painless. Breathing the gas would cause hypoxia, similar to what happens to pilots
at high altitudes.
Ohio to delay 7 executions while
searching for new drugs. Ohio will delay the executions of seven death row inmates
while searching for an adequate supply of drugs that complies with its new execution protocol, the
state's Department of Rehabilitation and Correction said Friday [1/30/2015]. That means the
state will not carry out any executions in 2015, the agency said in a press release.
Supreme Court to review Oklahoma execution procedure. The Supreme Court on Friday [1/23/2015]
agreed to review Oklahoma's controversial method of execution by lethal injection, taking up a case
brought by three death row inmates who accuse the state of violating the U.S. Constitution's ban on cruel
and unusual punishment.
AG Kamala Harris to appeal ruling against death penalty. A federal judge's "flawed"
decision declaring California's enforcement of the death penalty unconstitutional will be appealed,
state Atty. Gen. Kamala D. Harris announced Thursday [8/21/2014]. Harris will ask the U.S.
9th Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn last month's ruling by U.S. District Judge Cormac J.
Carney, who said decades-long delays and uncertainty about whether inmates will be executed violated the
Constitution's ban on cruel or unusual punishment. Harris personally opposes the death penalty but
promised voters she would enforce it.
How does the U.S. compare to other countries? Saudi
Arabia has beheaded 19 people in one month. Human Rights Watch reports that Saudi
Arabia has beheaded 19 people since the beginning of August. Some confessions may have been gained
under torture and one poor defendant was found guilty of sorcery. Yep, sorcery. That might sound
archaic, but we are talking about a regime so very concerned about offending God that it has even banned
certain names for being "blasphemous".
should be by firing squad, federal appeals court judge says. Days before an Arizona
murderer gasped and snorted for more than 90 minutes and died nearly two hours after his execution
began, a conservative federal appeals judge called for replacing lethal injection with firing
squads, saying the public must acknowledge that executions are "brutal, savage events." "Using
drugs meant for individuals with medical needs to carry out executions is a misguided effort to mask
the brutality of executions by making them look serene and beautiful — like something any
one of us might experience in our final moments," U.S. 9th Circuit Court Chief Judge Alex Kozinski
wrote in a dissent in the Arizona death penalty case of Joseph Rudolph Wood III.
Death Penalty Unconstitutional, Federal Judge Says. A federal judge ruled Wednesday [7/16/2014]
that California's death penalty system is so arbitrary and plagued with delay that it is unconstitutional, a
decision that is expected to inspire similar arguments in death penalty appeals around the country. The
state has placed hundreds of people on death row, but has not executed a prisoner since 2006. [...] About
40 percent of California's 748 death row inmates have been there more than 19 years.
judge rules California's death penalty unconstitutional. A federal judge declared California's death
penalty unconstitutional Wednesday, saying delays of 25 years or more in deciding appeals and carrying out
occasional executions have created an arbitrary and irrational system that serves no legitimate purpose. The
ruling by U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney of Santa Ana was limited to a single case and had no immediate impact
on executions statewide, which have been halted by federal courts since 2006 because of multiple problems in
lethal injection procedures.
The Editor says...
I'm no expert, but this might be the first time that the 8th Amendment has been used in this
manner. The judge appears to say that the anxiety caused by the long and variable delay between
conviction and execution is cruel and unusual. This problem is very easy to fix: Execute all
condemned criminals within 30 days. In China, they
don't even wait that long!
Execute Cleanly or Not at
All. The guillotine, which was invented specifically to eliminate foul-ups from the executioner's lack
of skill and/or sobriety, is about the only existing execution method that will get it right every time. Nobody
knows, however, whether the severed head can sense the trauma before consciousness is lost. This suggests a need
for a method that is known to be so painless and trauma-free that it is among the most deadly workplace hazards:
asphyxiation in an oxygen-deficient atmosphere. It is deadly precisely because it is painless and trauma-free;
the victim doesn't know what is happening to him before it is too late.
court overturns ruling on execution drugs. A federal appeals court on Wednesday threw out a ruling
requiring the Texas prison system to disclose more information about where it gets lethal-injection drugs, reversing
a judge who had halted an upcoming execution.
'Ground zero' for the death penalty.
Missouri executed its fourth inmate in as many months early Wednesday [2/26/2014], even as the issue of capital punishment has sparked a new
and reshaped political debate in the state and across the country. The Midwestern state has become a key battleground: As
lethal-injection drug supplies have been disrupted, states have been scrambling to adapt, and Missouri lawmakers from both sides of the
aisle aren't happy with what they say is excessive secrecy about the process and questions about whether the sentences are being competently
The Editor says...
Oh, I see. The drug is "made to order." (Now I'm a little more concerned about my
doctor's handwriting.) Is there not one pharmacist in Missouri who can make it?
States Consider Reviving Old-Fashioned
Executions. With lethal-injection drugs in short supply and new questions looming about their effectiveness, lawmakers in some death
penalty states are considering bringing back relics of a more gruesome past: firing squads, electrocutions and gas chambers.
Would End Death Penalty for Espionage, Treason, Assasinations. The Federal Death Penalty Abolition Act. (HR 3741)
would "end the death penalty for assassination or kidnapping that results in the death of the president or vice president, and also ends it
for the murder of a member of Congress." The list goes on: "using a weapon of mass destruction, or murder done via torture, child
abuse, war crimes, aircraft hijackings, sexual abuse, bank robberies or the willful wrecking of a train." And there is even more [...]
California will no longer pursue three-drug lethal
injections. California has dropped its legal efforts to win approval of a three-drug method of lethal injection and will instead propose
single-drug executions, a prisons spokesman said Wednesday [7/10/2013]. [...] Any new method of execution will be subject to public comment and review
by a federal court. The process could take years.
ECHR says it's 'inhuman' for murderers to get whole-life sentences. Judges in Strasbourg have opened a new front by ruling that
Britain is in breach of Article 3 of the European convention on human rights by imprisoning some the worst imaginable killers for whole-life
terms. The Grand Chamber of the European Court has ruled in three test cases that their sentences must be reviewed after 25 years.
The Editor says...
A murderer is still a murderer after 25 years. The purpose of a life sentence — and
capital punishment, to some extent — is to take murderers and the most egregiously violent
criminals off the steets. Permanently.
Barbarism in Philadelphia.
Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for abortionist Kermit Gosnell, who is on trial in Philadelphia for doping one patient to
death and killing seven fetuses born alive. He doubtless seems a worthy candidate for death row. Dr. Gosnell, after all,
is a monster. [...] Dr. Gosnell was merciless killer, willing to perform abortions at any stage of pregnancy. He routinely induced
labor in women more than six months pregnant and then cut the spines of their breathing newborns. This was Gosnell's "standard
procedure," according to the grand jury report. "These killings became so routine," in fact, "that no one could put an exact
number on them."
The death penalty does not serve as a deterrent if it's not on the books. After bombings, a push to restore the
death penalty. Democratic leaders today put a quick stop to a move to reinstate the death penalty in Massachusetts,
rejecting a House budget amendment containing a death penalty measure first proposed by former Gov. Mitt Romney in 2005. The
House voted 119-38 to send the amendment to further study in a committee, a move that eliminated the amendment from immediate
consideration as part of the budget bill under debate in the House this week. Massachusetts abolished the death penalty in 1984.
Boston Bomber Should Face The Possibility Of The Death Penalty. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his brother murdered three people at
the Boston Marathon, and grossly mutilated dozens more. The brother was killed in a shootout with police. The question is what
justice Dzhokhar should face. The answer, as the Justice Department apparently understands, is a jury empowered to consider the
Why Don Opposes Capital Rape.
It's pretty easy to see that I am not applying a double standard in opposing abortion and supporting the death penalty. An unborn child is
not the same thing as a convicted murderer. In fact, no unborn child has ever committed murder. [...] And nothing deters like capital
punishment. No executed man has ever become a recidivist.
Death and Life in Maryland.
Respect for human life should mean a murderer ought to forfeit his or her own life as payment for the life taken. Life in prison is
unequal punishment. It is not fair to the victim, to the victim's family or even to the killer who has not received his or her "just
deserts." In the case of abortion, obviously there can be no sentence of death or life in prison for the "murderer." But that
doesn't mean that Maryland cannot exercise an equivalent respect for life through laws that restrict abortion. Shouldn't the lives
of the unborn also be spared a death sentence?
The Cruel and Unusual Eighth Amendment.
To date the Court has not ruled that the death penalty per se violates the Eighth Amendment; however, it has created certain
procedures and exceptions governing the request of the death penalty, for instance requiring a criminal defendant to have in fact
killed or attempted to kill a victim. The Court also held in Atkins v. Virginia (2002) that the mentally retarded, as a class,
are exempt from the death penalty.
the Second Amendment by Restoring the Eighth. States find it cheaper to feed, clothe, house, and guard a
murderer to the end of his days, and nurse him through the diseases of old age, than to jump through the endless legal
hoops of proving to the most soft-headed appellate court in the land not only that he committed the crime, but that
he deserves to die for it. Those hoops were invented by the United States Supreme Court, in blatant disregard of
the original meaning of the Eighth Amendment. That amendment's ban on "cruel and unusual punishments" applied only
to the federal government in the first place, and it referred only to torturous executions such as crucifixion, burning,
boiling, drawing and quartering, etc. It did not prohibit strangulation by hanging, which was the common practice
of every jurisdiction involved in the amendment's adoption and ratification.
The death penalty... Lord Tebbit and our
readers call for its return. Angry calls for the reinstatement of hanging for killers of police officers were growing last night [9/19/2012] following
the double atrocity in Manchester. Led by Tory grandee Lord Tebbit, politicians and victims of crime said there was now enough evidence for the UK to re-examine
return to capital punishment? It is time we thought once more about the deterrent effect. The murder of two unarmed women police officers is
bound to re-ignite the debate over whether our police officers should be armed as a matter of routine and whether there should be a return to capital
punishment for limited categories of murder, such as that of a police officer, or more generally. The first option of arming police officers would be
allowed by our masters in Brussels and Strasbourg even though it might lead to cases of summary execution of the innocent; the second would not.
The death penalty is
not what it used to be. Seventeenth-century England, whence comes so much of our law and culture, hanged evildoers with the
enthusiasm of modern Texas. There's the story of the shipwrecked sailor of the time who was washed up on a distant shore after a
storm at sea. He opened his eyes the next morning, and the first thing he saw, on a hill far away, was a gallows. "Thank God!"
he cried. "I'm in a Christian country."
Gun crimes don't happen because of
'weak' laws. By combining data from the Census Bureau and the FBI, we see that in states with the death penalty for murder, the
murder rate in 2010 was 25 percent higher than in non-death-penalty states.
Tyrants and Human Nature.
Though the law of demand is not rocket science, liberals and progressives sometimes pretend it doesn't exist. Suppose one
wants to reduce the number of rapes, robberies and homicides. Should we raise or lower the cost of committing such acts?
Though the death penalty exacts a high cost for a homicide conviction, most liberals and progressives are against it. Some
liberals and progressives don't hold criminals responsible, because they believe that poverty and discrimination are the cause of
crime and that it's society that must be cured. Others think that soft sentences and rehabilitation programs reduce criminal
behavior. Both visions lower the cost to criminals of committing a crime.
Convicted Killers Often Live a
Life of Leisure, Professor Says. Most people imagine prison life for convicted murderers as being harsh, brutal, and
isolated, a real-life "Shawshank Redemption." So when convicted killer Danny Robbie Hembree Jr., 50, wrote a letter in January
to the Gaston Gazette in North Carolina, gloating about his comfortable life on death row, it got plenty of attention.
Crucifixion as policy. Benjamin Franklin wrote to M. Benjamin
Vaughn Esq. to explain a point of law. Franklin quoted Judge Bernet, who adjudicated a capital punishment case for horse theft.
The problem was whether it was right to hang a horse thief for the crime committed. Bernet said: ... "man, thou art not being hanged
only for stealing a horse; but that horses may not be stolen."
Mumia's The Word. For decades,
liberals tried persuading Americans to abolish the death penalty, using their usual argument: hysterical
sobbing. ... Fifty-nine percent of Americans now believe that an innocent man has been executed in the last
five years. There is more credible evidence that space aliens have walked among us than that an innocent
person has been executed in this country in the past 60 years, much less the past five years. But
unless members of the public are going to personally review trial transcripts in every death penalty case,
they have no way of knowing the truth. The media certainly won't tell them.
Department Pursues 'Strange' Probe of Execution Drug. The Obama administration has launched a
quiet campaign over the past two months to seize from local officials a key drug used in lethal
injections — part of a spreading investigation that has contributed to a de facto death
penalty freeze in several states.
Death Penalty Does Not Deter Liberals. Put simply, the abolitionist wants to get rid of the death
penalty regardless of guilt and regardless of process. And the impact of these endless appeals is
predictable: It undermines the deterrent capacity of the death penalty. If the liberal reader
cannot understand why a fifteen year delay between crime and punishment undermines deterrence then just try
this little two-step experiment: 1) The next time your fifteen-year old breaks a rule tell him he
will be grounded when he turns thirty. 2) See if you can count to ten before he decides to
capital punishment have blood on their hands. Opponents of capital punishment give us
names of innocents who would have been killed by the state had their convictions stood and they been
actually executed, and a few executed convicts whom they believe might have been innocent. But
proponents can name men and women who really were — not might have been — murdered
by convicted murderers while in prison. The murdered include prison guards, fellow inmates,
and innocent men and women outside of prison.
Drug Halt Raises Ire of Doctors. Doctors and pharmacists are criticizing a U.S. drug
company's decision to permanently halt production of an anesthetic used in carrying out the death
penalty, saying the drug was still needed for some surgical procedures.
They shoot horses, don't they? For executions, Texas
switches to drug used on animals. Texas, the state that executes more inmates than any
other, said on Wednesday it will follow Oklahoma and switch one of its lethal injection drugs to a
sedative often used to euthanize animals. "It has been used by Oklahoma in their execution
process, so there is a precedent there," said Michelle Lyons, a spokeswoman for the Texas Department
of Criminal Justice. "Its use was upheld by the courts, so we're confident it would be upheld
by courts for use in Texas."
executions on hold due to lethal injection drug shortage. The lethal injection method is used by
35 states and several of those do not have enough sodium thiopental, an anaesthetic which is used to
render condemned prisoners unconscious shortly before their death. Steve Beshear, the Kentucky governor,
has had to postpone signing two death warrants, for killers Ralph Baze and Robert Foley, whose appeals are
The Editor says...
Nonsense! Every hospital in America has a large stock of sufficiently lethal painkillers. But do
executions have to be completely painless? Did anyone on death row commit a completely painless crime?
Execution Drug From U.K. California has purchased a large supply of a drug used in executions
from a British pharmaceutical company, according to a spokeswoman with the California Department of Corrections
and Rehabilitation. The state ordered the drug before the U.K. last month said it planned to limits exports
of the drug, thiopental sodium, because of the U.K.'s "moral opposition to the death penalty."
The Editor says...
Why can't they use expired drugs? Are they unsafe? The condemned inmate might suffer some
adverse side effects? If a condemned prisoner caused someone else to suffer a horrible death,
do we really owe that criminal a painless departure?
Deaths That Save Lives. Critics of capital punishment argue that it does not act as a
deterrent. The facts speak for themselves: Over the past twenty-five years, the murder
rate in the U.S. has been cut almost in half.
Sense on Capital Punishment: The reliable two-thirds of Americans who have always supported the
death penalty probably wouldn't be surprised to find out that study after study has shown that the death
penalty deters murders. Most studies have concluded that some number of murders between three
and 18 are prevented for every application of capital punishment.
Argument for Capital Punishment. The most common objection opponents offer against capital
punishment is that innocents may be executed. My answer has always been that this is so rare (I do not
know of a proved case of mistaken execution in America in the last 50 years) that society must be prepared
to pay that terrible price. Why? Among other reasons, because more innocents will be killed by
murderers who are not executed (in prison, or once released or if they escape) than will be killed by the
state in erroneous executions.
Would Anyone Support the Death Penalty? (Part I). Once we comprehend this distinction
between murder and all other crimes (which can be restituted for), it should be clear that retribution
not only justifies execution, it requires it. Execution is the only correct penalty-in-kind
for murder, and retribution is the only value so far analyzed which justifies taking this most
precious of payments from someone.
Red Herring Politics.
[Scroll down] One appointment by Governor Jerry Brown ought to tell us a lot about his ideology.
His most famous — or infamous — appointment was making Rose Bird chief justice of the
California supreme court. She over-ruled 64 consecutive death penalty verdicts and upheld none.
Apparently no judge or jury could ever give a murderer a trial perfect enough to suit Rose Bird. To hear
Rose Bird and her supporters tell it, she was just "upholding the law." But, fortunately, the California
voters saw right through that pretense, and realized that she was doing just the opposite — imposing
her own personal opposition to the death penalty in the guise of interpreting the law.
U.S. executions hit 1,000.
A man who went on a 1992 Christmas killing spree that left six people dead, including an 18-year-old mother gunned down
at a pay phone, was put to death Tuesday. It marked the state's second execution in just over a week and the
1,000th in the U.S. since capital punishment resumed in 1976.
Sotomayor Vs. The Death Penalty.
A recently unearthed memo not disclosed on the questionnaire filed with the Senate Judiciary Committee shows
that the empathy that the Supreme Court nominee feels is more for the predators among us than their victims.
It also shows that some of the reasons this self-proclaimed "wise Latina" has for opposing capital punishment
are bogus and flawed.
Democide: When liberals in
the late 1950s decided to tackle crime, how did they go about it? Through the strange means of
decriminalizing criminals. Lowering prison sentences, emphasizing rehabilitation over punishment,
community action over policing. A series of Supreme Court decisions followed — Mapp, Escebedo,
Miranda — disrupting the criminal justice system and effectively evening the odds between criminals
and the public. And the result? Beginning in 1964 — the year of the Escebedo
decision — the murder rate shot up as if strapped to a rocket.
Cheapening the death
penalty: On Feb. 15, 1933, a naturalized citizen named Giuseppe Zangara, in attempting to assassinate
President-elect Franklin Delano Roosevelt who was giving a speech in the back of a car in Miami, shot five people,
including Chicago Mayor Anton Cermak. Zangara promptly — within days — pleaded guity to four
counts of attempted murder and was sentenced to 80 years in prison. When Mayor Cermak died 19 days after
the shootings, on March 6, 1933, two days after Roosevelt's inauguration (the date has since changed to Jan. 20),
Zangara was promptly indicted for first-degree murder. Because he had intended to commit murder, it was irrelevant
that his intended target was not the man he ultimately killed. Zangara pleaded guilty to the additional murder
charge, and on March 20, 1933 — 33 days after the shooting and after spending only 10 days
on Death Row, Zangara was executed.
propaganda. When the Maryland General Assembly meets next month, Gov. Martin O'Malley is expected
to push to repeal the state's capital-punishment law. Since the current death-penalty statute was enacted
in 1978, five men have been executed, the most recent being Wesley Baker on Dec. 5, 2005, for murdering a
woman in front of her grandchildren during a 1991 robbery in Baltimore County. In each of his first two
years as governor, Mr. O'Malley tried unsuccessfully to end capital punishment in Maryland, and he's determined
not to lose a third time.
Doctors' board bans
work on death row. An American doctors organisation has quietly decided to revoke the certification of
any member who participates in executing a prisoner by lethal injection.
Judge: No allergy risk
proven for Ohio execution. An inmate scheduled to die next week for raping and strangling a 16-year-old
girl has failed to present enough evidence of an allergy to anesthesia that could affect the execution, a federal
judge ruled Friday [4/16/2010].
The Editor says...
If he would prefer an alternative, let him hang. Really, since when are condemned prisoners entitled to
painless executions? You may be interested to know that Mr. Durr had a trial by jury and was convicted
of aggravated murder; kidnapping; aggravated robbery and
The Editor says...
What about the cost of several decades of maximum-security incarceration?
State has enough
sodium thiopental to execute four. In a padlocked refrigerator behind San Quentin State Prison's
death chamber, 12 grams of scarce sodium thiopental is available to carry out up to four executions.
How the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation acquired the drug is both a mystery and an
apparent impediment to its use. Legal analysts and human rights advocates contend that the state must
have gotten the drug from a foreign producer...
rejects UN call to abolish death penalty. The United States dismissed international calls Tuesday
[11/9/2010]to abolish the death penalty as friends and foes alike delivered their recommendations on how
Washington can improve its human rights record.
Texas Must Disclose
Source of Execution Drug. Texas must disclose the source of a controversial drug used in capital
punishments, according to the state attorney general, in a move that could prompt other states to be more transparent
about their drug supplies.
Delivers on Texas Death Penalty. As Texas governor, GOP presidential hopeful Rick Perry has
presided over 234 executions. It's a record number, which, The Washington Post reported last week,
bestows on Perry "a law-and-order credential that none of his competitors can match — even if they
wanted to." Watch how pundits will try to turn that statistic into a political negative — and
paint Perry as the governor with blood on his spurs — even though American voters overwhelmingly
support the death penalty.
Government policy now grants murderers immunity
from punishment for new crimes. Crime Without Punishment.
Death penalty opponents endlessly moralize that "no civilized society can execute human beings." But
how can a society that considers itself civilized tolerate being governed by power-abusing officials who confer
on the most violent and depraved, precisely because they are the most violent and depraved, the right to commit
additional murders and other barbaric crimes without fear of any punishment at all?
Exactly, Does NC's 'Racial Justice Act' Mean? We'll Know Soon. A judge in Fayetteville, N.C., on
Wednesday [2/15/2012] heard closing arguments in the first case heard under the new law, which allows an inmate
off death row if race is found to have been a "significant factor" in the sentence. ... The decision, which should
come in the next few weeks, will likely set a precedent for what happens with the state's other death-row inmates.
Nearly all of North Carolina's 157 death-row inmates, including roughly 60 white inmates, have challenged their
death sentences on racial-bias grounds.
You're Ever Murdered, Here's an Idea. Opponents of capital punishment for murderers argue that
the state has no right to take a murderer's life. Apparently, one fact that abolitionists forget or
overlook is that the state is acting on behalf of the murdered person and the murdered person's family,
not only on behalf of society. In order to make this as clear as possible, here is my proposal:
Americans should be able to declare what they want the state to do on their behalf if they are murdered. ... Just
as I have a pink "donor" circle on my driver's license signifying that in case I die, I wish to provide my organs
to help keep some person alive, I wish to make it known that if I am murdered, I do not want my murderer kept
alive a day longer than legally necessary.
Hang 'em high, Canadians say.
Dust off that hood, John Radclive. It's been 50 years since the last criminal hangings took place in
Canada, and Radclive was the nation's first professional executioner, delivering about 150 final
sentences. ... In fact, only 37% of people now think death for violent offenders is a bad idea.
judge bars import of execution drug. In a win for death penalty opponents, a federal judge in Washington today [3/27/2012]
barred the use of sodium thiopental — one of three drugs used in executions in Texas until a year ago — on grounds
that its importation violates federal drug laws.
Mugshots of Florida Death Row Inmates. What a fine looking bunch. Each
photo is accompanied by an extremely brief biography, and it appears to me that most of these people have been on death row for more than 20 years.
man faces death penalty. [Scroll down] Capital punishment has been a hotly contested issue in California. In November,
California voters will vote on a ballot measure that would replace capital punishment with life imprisonment without the possibility
of parole. If the ballot measure passes, it would commute the sentences of more than 700 inmates on death row to life
in prison without possibility of parole — to become the state's most severe form of criminal punishment.
W.Va. delegate fighting to
reinstate death penalty. With neighboring Maryland about to be-come the sixth state in as many years to abolish the death
penalty, one West Virginia delegate is on a quixotic quest to resume executions in his state for the first time in a half-century.
This year marks the 27th in a row that Republican Delegate John Overington has introduced a bill to reinstate capital punishment.
Texas refuses to give back lethal drugs, proceeds with
execution. A Texas man convicted of killing his parents was executed as planned Wednesday night despite a growing controversy over the drug used to carry out the punishment.
Last week, state prison officials refused a request from the compounding pharmacy that created and sold Texas the pentobarbital — a single-dose drug used in executions — to
return the drug.
Missouri to Return Execution Drug After European Objections. The state of
Missouri said on Wednesday it will return an anesthetic it planned to use for executions after the German manufacturer voiced concerns that using it for lethal injections could lead to
the European Union to ban export of the drug to the United States.
Editor at Large Likens U.S. Death Penalty to ISIS Beheaders. While promoting a book of news photography on CBS
This Morning on Saturday [9/6/2014], Sir Harold Evans, editor at large of the Reuters news agency, called the electric chair
a "monstrosity" and said seeing a picture of one was "almost as appalling, in its sense, as these barbarians who have taken the
heads off journalists in the desert." Of course, the imposition of the death penalty in the U.S. is reserved for the worst
murderers, after lengthy trials and appeals, while the ISIS executioners beheaded innocent journalists as a way to terrorize the
Supreme Court [has been] Asked To Halt Execution Of Florida Death Row Inmate.
Attorneys for convicted killer Michael Duane Zack on Tuesday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block
his planned Oct. 3 execution, after Florida courts rejected arguments that he should be spared
because of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. The attorneys filed a request for a stay of execution and
an accompanying petition asking the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the issues in the case.
The move came after the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday refused to halt Zack's execution for the
1996 murder of a woman in Escambia County.
Who Preyed On Older Women Killed By Cellmate In Texas Prison. On Tuesday morning, a
man accused of murdering nearly two dozen older women and who had been convicted last year in the
deaths of two of them was killed by his cellmate in a Texas prison, officials said. Billy
Chemirmir, 50, was discovered deceased in his cell, Hannah Haney, a spokesperson for the Texas
Department of Criminal Justice said. Haney confirmed that Chemirmir's cellmate, who is
currently serving a sentence for murder, was identified as the perpetrator. However, she
refrained from disclosing the cellmate's identity or providing details about the method used to
The Editor says...
Hats off to the inmate who did what the State of Texas and at least one jury didn't have the backbone
to do. If I were unfortunate (or guilty) enough to find myself in the Joint, and they put a
remorseless serial killer (with nothing to lose) in the cell with me, I would be inclined to preserve
my life before the other guy killed me just for sport.
Judge [has been] Asked To Halt Oct. 3 Execution Of Florida Death Row Inmate Michael Duane
Zack. Attorneys for Florida inmate Michael Duane Zack asked a federal judge this week
to block his scheduled Oct. 3 execution, contending that a state clemency process was flawed.
Zack's attorneys filed the federal case and asked for a stay of execution as they also pursue a
separate appeal at the Florida Supreme Court. Gov. Ron DeSantis on Aug. 17 signed a
death warrant for Zack in the 1996 Escambia County murder of Ravonne Smith during a crime spree
that also included killing another woman.
is the 'greatest serial murder ever in American history' being covered up?! Not sure
if you've noticed, but our culture has become rather apathetic when it comes to death. It
seems we can't even begin to process a tragedy before the next one strikes ... and then the next
one. "We have this culture of death," says Daniel Horowitz. "We become mind-numb robots at a
time of the internet where we should know more than ever," and yet "we know less than ever; we care
about less than ever." "We're gonna talk about a story that should be the greatest crime story
of our lifetime, and I'm not exaggerating," he says — a story that is "probably the
greatest serial murder ever in American history." What's perhaps most disturbing, however, is
the fact that so few people know about this story. Between the years of 2016 and 2018, Kenyan
national Billy Chemirmir was accused of smothering 22 elderly women to death and stealing their
jewelry in several different senior centers across the Dallas metroplex.
prosecutor says he will not seek death penalty for man in slayings of 2 elderly women. A
Texas prosecutor says he will not seek the death penalty for a man convicted of killing two elderly women
and suspected of killing nearly two dozen total. "Billy Chemirmir is an evil person who preyed upon
our most vulnerable citizens," Collin County District Attorney Greg Willis said in a statement Thursday.
"Although he is certainly deserving of a death sentence, my decision ... is informed by the fact that he
has already been tried three times in another county and he will never be a free man again," Willis said.
Death Row Inmate Executed 35 Years After He Raped, Brutally Murdered Woman. More than
35 years after he raped and murdered a woman in her Melbourne condominium, James Phillip
Barnes was executed Thursday evening at Florida State Prison. Barnes, 61, was pronounced dead
at 6:13 p.m., becoming the fifth Florida inmate to die by lethal injection this year. In
a somewhat unusual move, Barnes did not pursue last-ditch legal appeals to try to prevent the
execution after Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a death warrant on June 22. Kayla
McLaughlin, communications director for the Florida Department of Corrections, said Barnes did not
request a last meal and did not have any visitors before the execution. He did not make a
final statement while strapped to a gurney.
Does the electric chair have a different voltage setting for females? ACLU
Is Upset That a Child Rapist and Double Murderer Was Executed as a Man. The
transgender issue makes everyone crazy. That's the only explanation I can give for the
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) berating the state of Florida for executing Duane Owen, who
was convicted of raping and murdering a 14-year-old babysitter and a 38-year-old mother of
two. Indeed, the ACLU is strongly opposed to capital punishment. But the organization
only made passing reference to their opposition to the death penalty. Instead, they were
livid with Florida for executing Duane Owen because the state refused to allow Owen to "transition"
Prosecutors Seek Death Penalty For 'Demonic' MS-13 Gang Member Who Decapitated Uber Eats
Driver. Florida prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for a 'demonic' MS-13 gang
member who decapitated an Uber Eats driver. A convicted felon affiliated with MS-13, a street
gang formed by Salvadoran immigrants, murdered, decapitated and dismembered a Florida Uber eats
driver while he was making a delivery last month. Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco said the
remains of the delivery driver were found in trash bags inside of the MS-13 gang member's home.
theft, led by food and beverage, is surging across the U.S.. Food and beverage coming
into port or in a warehouse is No. 1 on the list of products being targeted by freight thieves who
are increasing their criminal activity across the national supply chain. It's a sign of the
economic times, and adding further pressure to the high prices faced by consumers during an
elevated inflation environment. "During the financial downturn in 2008, we saw a theft shift
towards food and beverage where it stayed in that spot until the end of 2019," says Scott Cornell,
transportation lead and crime and theft specialist at insurance provider Travelers. "In 2020, we
saw the target move to household goods, because we were all at home. In 2021, electronic
theft was high due to some shortages as a result of all the working and schooling from home."
Food inflation has moderated, but remains up almost 10% year over year, according to the latest
CPI data from February, released earlier this month.
Having The Highest Rates Of Violent And Property Crimes. Arizona, Colorado, and
Washington states have much higher rates of violence when compared to other large states.
Arizona, Colorado, California, Indiana, Texas, and Washington have much higher rates of property
crimes when compared to other large states. Arizona, Indiana, Tennessee, and Washington have
much higher rates of burglary when compared to other large states.
executes Scott Eizember. For the first time in 2023 and the eighth time in eight years, Oklahoma has
executed a death row inmate. Scott Dean Eizember was pronounced dead by lethal injection at 10:15 a.m.
Thursday morning [1/12/2023]. He's the eighth death row inmate to be killed since the state resumed capital
punishment in October 2021 after a six-year moratorium. He was 62. Eizember was convicted in the 2003
beating death of 76-year-old A.J. Cantrell. He was also sentenced to 150 years in prison for the
shooting death of 70-year-old Patsy Cantrell. After killing the Cantrells, Eizember went on a lengthy crime spree,
which included kidnapping and beating multiple people, and shooting and wounding a 16-year-old boy.
execute its first openly transgender woman. Unless Missouri Gov. Mike Parson grants clemency, Amber
McLaughlin, 49, will become the first transgender woman executed in the U.S. She [sic] is scheduled to die by
injection Tuesday for killing a former girlfriend in 2003. McLaughlin's attorney, Larry Komp, said there are no
court appeals pending. The clemency request focuses on several issues, including McLaughlin's traumatic childhood
and mental health issues, which the jury never heard in her [sic] trial.
executes Kevin Johnson, convicted for murdering Police Officer William McEntee. A Missouri man convicted
of killing a Kirkwood police officer in a fit of rage in 2005 was put to death by lethal injection on Tuesday. The
St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that Kevin Johnson was executed Tuesday night [11/29/2022]. Johnson was
found guilty of killing Kirkwood Officer William McEntee during a fit of rage over Johnson's brother's death.
Johnson blamed the death on police, according to court documents.
Survivor' Won't Be Subjected to Lethal Injection Again. Alabama won't seek another lethal injection date
for an inmate whose Sept. 22 execution had been halted because of problems establishing an intravenous line,
according to the terms of a settlement agreement approved by US District Judge R. Austin Huffaker Jr. on
Tuesday. The state agreed to never use lethal injection again as an execution method to put Alan Eugene Miller to
death. Any future effort to execute him will be done by nitrogen hypoxia, an execution method authorized in
Alabama but one that has never been used to carry out a death sentence in the US. There is currently no protocol
in place for using nitrogen hypoxia, reports the AP.
correctional officers shoot, kill 2 inmates who were stabbing fellow prisoner. Correctional officers at a
Northern California prison shot and killed two inmates who were stabbing a fellow prisoner with makeshift weapons,
authorities said Wednesday [11/30/2022]. The attack happened around 11 a.m. Tuesday at the High Desert State
Prison in Susanville, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said in a statement. The alleged
attackers, Raul Cuen and Frank Nanez, refused to follow verbal orders from prison staff to stop attacking Anthony
Aguilera, the statement said.
fails to execute condemned inmate for third time in recent years. The state of Alabama this week failed
for the third time in recent years in an attempt to execute a condemned inmate in Montgomery. Officials late on
Thursday [11/17/2022] were unable to resolve problems with the intravenous drug lines intended to administer a lethal
injection to condemned murderer Kenneth Eugene Smith. It's the third such failure in the state in the past four
years. The state in September of this year called off the execution of Alan Miller, who was convicted in 1999 of
killing three men; in 2018 it also nixed the execution of Doyle Hamm. In both cases issues with the intravenous
lines prevented the execution. Miller is still alive and attempting to negotiate a settlement with Alabama; Hamm
died of natural causes in prison.
Brown Jackson sides with death row inmate in first Supreme Court opinion. Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson
sided with a death row inmate in Ohio in her first written opinion since joining the Supreme Court this summer.
Jackson, who was joined by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, wrote a dissenting opinion objecting to the Supreme Court's decision
to reject an appeal from Davel Chinn, the death row inmate, who was convicted of a 1989 murder in Dayton. Chinn's
lawyers had petitioned the court to take his case, arguing that the prosecution withheld evidence that a key witness who
identified him as the shooter was mentally disabled.
Compassion Puts Lives in Jeopardy. The shooter, Nestor Hernandez, was there to visit his girlfriend, who
had just given birth to his child. Hernandez is a 30-year-old lifelong criminal with a rap sheet going back to his
teens. He had been in and out of the Dallas criminal justice system for such charges as robbery and felony assault
before he was twenty, and he earned his first serious jail time — an eight-year sentence — after a
violent burglary in which he and his accomplice repeatedly beat up a woman to gain access to her apartment and
car. For that one, Nestor Hernandez pled guilty in September 2015 to "aggravated robbery," which could have won
him anywhere from five to 99 years in jail. They gave him eight. Only they didn't. If he'd served the
full eight years, he'd still have been in jail. He wouldn't have been free to acquire a girlfriend, get her
pregnant, visit her at the hospital, beat her up, and kill two hospital employees. So what happened? The
system decided to show "compassion" to this model prisoner with a violent history, a rap sheet going back to his
childhood, and gang tattoos on his face and neck. They didn't even make him stay the full eight years but let him
out of jail on October 20, 2021, after just six years. They installed an ankle bracelet and called it "parole."
It was this choice that enabled him to put this girlfriend in a position where he could visit her hospital room and
start killing innocent bystanders on October 22, just a year after he was freed.
Accused Of Fatal Shooting At Dallas Hospital Was Out Of Prison Early Despite Violent History. The man
accused of fatally shooting two medical workers at Methodist Dallas Medical Center in Texas on Saturday was on parole
after being released from prison years early despite his long criminal history. The arrest warrant affidavit for
Nestor Oswaldo Hernandez, 30, states that during his girlfriend's labor, he became erratic and accused her of cheating
on him. He then hit her with a handgun before opening fire on the first two medical workers who walked into the
room. A Methodist Health System (MHS) police officer who responded to the scene shot and wounded Hernandez.
It was then that Hernandez was transported to another hospital for treatment. The Dallas Police Department and
MHSPD later announced they arrested Hernandez for capital murder.
They're reserving the death penalty for a REALLY serious crime someday. Parkland
school shooting: Jury recommends life in prison without parole for gunman, rejects the death penalty. A
jury has recommended that Nikolas Cruz be sentenced to life in prison without parole in the massacre of 17 people at
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, in 2018. The 12-person jury's verdict was read in a
packed courtroom Thursday before visibly distraught family members and the shooter, who remained blank-faced
throughout. The jury reached its decision after over a day of deliberations in the trial that kicked off July 18.
The trial was to decide whether to sentence him to life in prison or the death penalty. Prosecutors had sought the death
penalty, while the defense had asked for life in prison. The jury had to reach a unanimous decision for the death sentence.
woman who impregnated 2 inmates removed from N.J.'s female prison. A transgender inmate who impregnated two
women while incarcerated at Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women has been moved to a new facility, according to the
Department of Corrections. Demi Minor, 27, was transferred to Garden State Youth Correctional Facility, a prison for
young adult offenders in Burlington County, last month, Dan Sperrazza, a Department of Corrections spokesman, said. He
said the DOC moved Minor to the vulnerable unit at the facility and that she is currently the only woman prisoner on the
site. Sperrazza said he could not comment on the DOC's specific housing actions in Minor's case because of policies
Court rules in favor of Georgia death row inmate hoping to die by firing squad. The Supreme Court on Thursday
ruled 5-4 in favor of a Georgia death row inmate pursuing a legal effort to change his execution method from lethal injection
to death by firing squad. The issue in the case was procedural in nature, but the underlying dispute concerned inmate
Michael Nance's claim that subjecting him to lethal injection would violate the Constitution's prohibition on cruel and
unusual punishment. Nance, who was sentenced to death in 2002 for fatally shooting a bystander during a bank robbery,
argued that his longtime prescription back pain drug may cause the sedative to fail to work properly. He also argued
that his "severely compromised" veins may "blow," "leading to the leakage of the lethal injection drug into the surrounding
tissue" and thereby causing "intense pain and burning."
The Editor says...
I'm not sure how the firing squad could be considered cruel and unusual if the condemned prisoner is asking for it specifically.
Failure in Confronting Mass Murderers. [Scroll down] The American Psychological Association this year
argues that "prior research suggests that approximately two-thirds of public mass shooters exhibit signs of mental illness...
and that even the most 'mentally healthy' perpetrators could be recoded as having signs of mental illness or suicidality..."
None of these "signs" is anything but behaviors, not physical symptoms of disease. Regardless, mental health and
mental illness remain most of current liberal and conservatives' go-to explanations for virtually all impossible-to-stop
anti-social phenomena. This is mainly due to frustration; what if there is no way to lessen the criminal population,
especially in violent cities? Yet, regarding mass murders, surprising as it may be, the generally psychiatrically
focused left has a few — just a few — dissenters. The Psychiatric Times wrote
unambiguously, "The fact of the matter is that ideology, racism, and perceived injustice trump mental illness in many of
these cases. To put it bluntly, racism is not mental illness." This incongruous admission is no doubt due to the
Left's unwillingness to excuse perceived racism, which it finds everywhere.
Victims Is a Dumb Way to Fight Crime. Democrats and the establishment media have pushed defunding the police
for several years now. The result has been a sobering spike in violent crime. Left-wing D.A.s routinely offer
low-bail or no-bail bonds for violent criminals, who go on to commit more violence. Police are often fearful of being
accused of racism — by the left and the media — if they act on credible warnings of serious and deviant
threats before the disturbed person attacks. This is a big part of why we find that so many of these killers had been
on the radar of law enforcement for months or even years without any preventive action. Police had known for years how
dangerous the Parkland School shooter was — and did nothing. The FBI was warned a year in advance by the
Russian government of the radicalism of the Boston Marathon bombers — but did nothing, not even warn Boston
police. The man who drove his SUV into a Waukesha Christmas Parade, killing five and injuring 40, was out on bond for
allegedly running over his girlfriend a few weeks earlier with the same SUV.
'Car of State' Is Running Off the Road. There are dozens of district attorneys in large cities who ignore the
laws they've been entrusted to defend. They choose to impose their will on local judicial systems by ignoring laws,
reducing sentences, and dismissing cases. A child-molester in Los Angeles was given a sentence so light that the
criminal couldn't believe his good fortune. In a taped phone call, the criminal seemed amazed at the light sentence
provided by George Gascon, the Los Angeles district attorney. Former U.S. attorney general Bill Barr recently told a
Fraternal Order of Police audience in New Orleans, "the emergence in some of our large cities of district attorneys that
style themselves as 'social justice' reformers, who spend their time undercutting the police, letting criminals off the hook,
and refusing to enforce the law is demoralizing to law enforcement and dangerous to public safety." The great cities of
the United States are mired in a crime wave.
Your Poison: South Carolina Death Row Inmate Chooses Method For His Execution. The last time the state of South Carolina
executed an inmate was over ten years ago, when Jeffrey Motts was put to death in 2011 for the crime of having strangled a fellow inmate
while serving a life sentence for another murder. But in less than two weeks, another convict in the Palmetto State may be
put to death for his crimes, and we now know the method that will be used. Richard Bernard Moore is set to be executed on
April 29th, and per South Carolina law he has been given the option to choose between the electric chair and firing squad
for his mode of death. Moore has opted to die by firing squad, which means he'll face a team of three prison guards armed
with rifles pointed at his heart. Moore would be only the fourth American to die by firing squad since 1976.
Execution Scheduled in South Carolina with Firing Squad as an Option. South Carolina has set a date for its
first death row execution since renovating its Death Chamber to accommodate inmates who choose execution by firing
squad. The state's Department of Corrections (SCDC) announced Thursday that Richard Bernard Moore, 57, is scheduled to
be executed on April 29, which would be the state's first execution in over ten years. Moore was convicted of killing
James Mahoney, a convenience store clerk, in Spartenburg and has spent over 20 years on death row, the Associated Press (AP)
reported. He will choose between the available execution methods of either death by electric chair or death by firing squad.
Man Sentenced to Death for Killing Police Officer. A judge on Thursday [3/3/2022] sentenced a Florida man to
death for fatally shooting an Orlando police officer while he was on the run for killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend.
Jurors in November found Markeith Loyd, 46, guilty in the January 2017 death of Lt. Debra Clayton, and unanimously
recommended a death sentence during a hearing in December. Circuit Judge Leticia Marques announced her decision during
a brief hearing Thursday morning. Loyd is already serving a life sentence for killing Sade Dixon, his former
girlfriend, a month before Clayton was killed.
shows man stealing 10 steaks from NYC Trader Joe's. A man was caught on [New York] Post video allegedly
brazenly swiping about a dozen steaks from a Manhattan Trader Joe's on Tuesday morning [2/8/2022]. The suspect —
now wanted by cops — was at the grocery store's East 14th Street location around 8:30 a.m. when he was caught
on footage strolling out the door with 10 packages of meat piled up in his arms. Two helpless Trader Joe's staffers had
followed the man up an escalator leading to the store's exit but only stopped him from taking a shopping basket
outside — not the meat, the video shows. "They basically just tell us not to do anything, just let them go,"
a Trader Joe's worker, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, later explained to The Post.
from executed killer leads to likely remains of sister-in-law in Mississippi. The Mississippi inmate who
admitted to killing his sister-in-law just before his execution also left behind a map for investigators — leading
to the discovery of human remains, prosecutors said. The likely remains of Felicia Cox, who disappeared in 2007, were
found Sunday in Pontotoc County using a map drawn by her brother-in-law, David Neal Cox. The 50-year-old man told his
attorneys he killed her before he was executed on Nov. 17 for killing his estranged wife in 2010.
110 Defendants Charged with Capital Murder are Let Loose in Houston, Thanks to Democrat Judges. In Harris
County, Tex., where the city of Houston is located, at least 113 defendants charged with capital murder have been freed and
let loose on the streets thanks to criminal justice reform. Fox 26 Houston reported the shocking news, which they claim
is part of "more than 50,000 accused felons [benefiting] from the "catch and release" philosophy of "criminal justice"
perpetrated by the current crop of democratic "reform" judges."
the Rich and Powerful Can Thrive in Lawless San Francisco. In "progressive" San Francisco, safety is for the
rich. That's the reality of what's happening in the San Francisco Bay Area as bad policy and anti-police attitudes have
created a haven for criminality. Like many other urban parts of America, the Bay Area has been hit with a historic
surge in violent crime in the last few years. However, unlike many other parts of the country, the Bay Area has also
been hit by a huge uptick in car theft, property crimes, and shoplifting. One would think that this would necessitate a
massive response by city leaders and the police department to counter the crime surge. Instead, San Francisco attempted
to defund the police following the death of George Floyd in May of last year. Unsurprisingly, it now has a major
deficit of police personnel and can't find replacements for a department where over a third of its officers have
retired. I wonder why? Truly, a mystery. On top of that, San Francisco has a district attorney, Chesa
Boudin, whose plan for "radical change" and equality has been mostly to release criminals and not prosecute repeat offenders
of serious crimes.
Don't they all? Oklahoma
inmate has adverse reaction during execution. An Oklahoma man began vomiting and convulsing during his
execution Thursday, ending a nearly seven-year moratorium on the death penalty in the state. According to the
Associated Press, 60-year-old John Marion Grant was executed for the slaying of a prison cafeteria worker in 1998.
Grant began convulsing after the sedative midazolam was administered. Death penalty experts say this type of reaction
is extremely rare, raising questions as to what caused such behavior. "I've never heard of or seen that," said the
executive director of the nonpartisan Death Penalty Information Center Robert Durham. "That is notable and unusual."
Shooter Nikolas Cruz May Still Get Death Sentence Despite Expected Guilty Plea. The suspected gunman in the
2018 Parkland mass shooting is reportedly planning to enter a guilty plea and will inform a judge of his decision at a
hearing in Florida on Friday [10/15/2021]. Florida's WSVN-7 reported on Thursday that the 23-year-old Nikolas Cruz will
announce his intention to enter a guilty plea at a status hearing before Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer. In
August 2018, he confessed to killing students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. The Broward County
Public Defender's Office did not confirm or deny that Cruz would plead guilty on Thursday. Cruz could still be
sentenced to death for the shootings despite a guilty plea.
governor denies clemency to death row inmate. Missouri Gov. Mike Parson on Monday [10/4/2021] declined to
grant clemency to death row inmate Ernest Johnson, despite requests for mercy from the pope, two federal lawmakers and
thousands of petition signers. Johnson, 61, was convicted of killing three convenience store workers during a
closing-time robbery in 1994. He is scheduled to die by injection at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the state prison in Bonne
Terre, about 50 miles south of St. Louis.
Bush demands death row inmate be granted clemency because execution perpetuates cycle of 'slavery and lynching'.
Cori Bush has demanded Missouri Governor Mike Parson grant a last-minute clemency to a death row inmate who killed three people in
a 1994 convenience store robbery, saying that executions perpetuates the cycle of slavery and lynching. On Friday, Bush and
Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II petitioned for Parson (R) to halt the execution of 61-year-old Ernest Lee Johnson. Johnson, who
is scheduled to be executed at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the state prison in Bonne Terre, was sentenced to death for killing three
people while robbing a Columbia, Missouri convenience store in 1994.
Obscenity of Paroling Sirhan Sirhan, Assassin of Robert F. Kennedy. Last week, a California parole board voted
to allow the release of Sirhan Sirhan, the Palestinian immigrant to shot and killed Sen. Robert F. Kennedy (D-NY)
immediately after he won the state's crucial presidential primary in June 1968. The decision to accept the parole
board's recommendation now goes to the governor — who could be Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), or a replacement, if
Newsom loses the Sep. 14 recall election and does not decide on the parole before he leaves.
F. Kennedy Assassin Sirhan Sirhan Granted Parole In California. Sirhan Sirhan is the man who shot and killed
Senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1968. He was tried and sentenced to death for the crime. Some years later, his
sentence was commuted to life in prison. Now, after going up for parole 16 times, he has been granted parole.
This is craziness. If Lee Harvey Oswald was alive today, would he get parole too?
assassin Sirhan Sirhan granted parole by California board. Robert F. Kennedy's assassin, Sirhan Sirhan, was
granted parole by a California board Friday after spending more than 50 years in prison after two of his sons said they
support his release, a decision that still needs to be approved by the governor. Sirhan gunned down Kennedy, then a
Democratic U.S. senator from New York and brother of President John F. Kennedy, in 1968 at the Ambassador Hotel in Los
Angeles moments after Kennedy delivered a victory speech in the pivotal California primary. Sirhan was convicted of
first-degree murder. Sirhan, a Christian Palestinian from Jordan, has said he was angry at Kennedy for his support of
Israel. This was his 16th appearance before the parole board.
sentenced to 25 years for murdering sister's rapist in prison. A Washington state inmate was sentenced to
another 25 years in prison for murdering his cellmate — a convicted child sex offender who raped his sister.
Shane Goldsby, 26, was sentenced this week after he beat to death his 70-year-old cellmate Robert Munger in June 2020.
Munger was reportedly serving a 43-year prison sentence for his child sex crimes. Goldsby said he snapped after Munger
began teasing him with details about the rape, which later proved true, according to KHQ. "I had so much stuff going on
in my head," he told the outlet. "I wasn't stable at that point. I wasn't. I was getting to that point,
because (Munger) kept wanting to give me details about what happened, what he did — about the photos and the
videos of him doing this stuff. It was building up."
cop killer gets death sentence after San Antonio detective's execution-style slaying. A Texas man who fatally
shot a San Antonio police officer twice in the head in 2016 was sentenced to death on Friday [8/6/2021]. Otis McKane,
36, was found guilty of capital murder July 26 in the execution-style slaying of Detective Benjamin Marconi.
McKane claimed that Marconi, a 20-year veteran, was a random target of his anger but prosecutors said the defendant had been
stalking the detective and planning his "heinous and unspeakable" murder, according to the San Antonio Express-News.
The Bexar County jury deliberated for 7 and a half hours Friday before recommending the sentence. It took less than
30 minutes for the jury to find him guilty, according to the Express-News.
Not Easy Being Anti-Death Penalty: Baltimore Woman Found With Decomposing Bodies Of Two Children In
Trunk. Last Friday [7/30/2021], police in Baltimore conducted a routine traffic stop of Nicole Johnson and
found the 33-year old was driving with a suspended license and other minor infractions, but police also made another gruesome
discovery. Johnson had the decomposing bodies of her niece and nephew in the trunk of her car. Both children had
been severely malnourished, with 7-year-old Joshlyn and 5-year-old Larry weighing only twenty and eighteen pounds
respectively. Johnson later admitted that Joshlyn had died over a year ago after Johnson had struck the girl multiple
times, causing her to fall and hit her head, at which time Johnson put her niece's body in her trunk. Then two months
ago, the emaciated Larry went to sleep and never woke up, according to Johnson, who then put his corpse in the trunk as
well. These two children didn't just die too young at the hands of some cold-blooded murderer, indiscriminately ending
their lives with some quick method. The short lives of innocent Larry and Joshlyn must have been utterly horrific.
Is Death Penalty Still on the Table in Another County? When Dallas County's district attorney announced he
wouldn't seek the execution of a man suspected in at least 24 killings, some of the families of the dead and the DA's
political critics shifted their hopes to another venue just across the county line. Citing logistical challenges,
District Attorney John Creuzot told the families he was going to focus on obtaining consecutive life-without-parole prison
sentences for Billy Chemirmir, who has been charged with 13 counts of capital murder in Dallas County after he was accused of
smothering elderly women and stealing their jewelry, cash and other valuables. But Chemirmir could still face the death
penalty on five similar charges in Collin County.
death row inmate dies by lethal injection for beating great-aunt to death. Texas inmate Quintin Jones was
executed by lethal injection on Wednesday evening [5/19/2021]. He was 41. The death row inmate was convicted of
killing his great-aunt in 1999 when he was 20-years-old. He beat his great-aunt Berthena Bryant, 83, to death and stole
$30 to pay for drugs. He admitted to the crimes, and his family forgave him.
murderer admits to strangling serial killer in shared prison cell. A California murderer admitted to murdering
his cellmate, the I-5 Strangler serial killer, in order to avenge his victims. According to the San Jose Mercury News,
which received a five-page confession, Jason Budrow, 40, strangled 81-year-old Roger Kibbe in February, the day they became
cellmates at Mule Creek State Prison because he wanted a single-man cell and was on "a mission for avenging" Kibbe's victims.
DA Gascón drops death penalty for man charged with killing police officer. Los Angeles District Attorney
(DA) George Gascón said Friday [2/19/2021] he will not seek the death penalty for an admitted gang member who killed a
police officer and his own cousin. Michael Christopher Mejia, 30, is awaiting trial on charges stemming from Feb. 20,
2017. One of Mejia's victims was officer Keith Boyer, 53, who was responding to a report of a traffic collision in which
Mejia had been involved.
Was He Innocent? ANSWER: No. Here is this week's installment of "The New York Times is ALWAYS lying about
criminals (and probably everything else)." The Times desperately wants you to believe that there are actual cases of
innocent people being put to death in America. Their current poster boy for the cause is Sedley Alley, executed in
2006. But the Criminal Lobby is hoping a post-mortem DNA test — on evidence that has nothing to do with his
guilt or innocence — will allow them to howl that an INNOCENT man was executed! I knew nothing about this
case, but I knew the Times' description of the facts was a lie. How did I know? [#1] No jury would have
convicted a man, much less sentenced him to death, much less had that sentence repeatedly upheld, on such a flimsy record;
and [#2] There is no credible evidence that a single innocent person has been put to death in this country for at least 75 years.
There Was A Country. Once there was a country that knew how to deal with violent offenders. A child was
raped and murdered in New Brunswick, New Jersey, on December 22, 1921, the perpetrator pretending to be Santa Claus.
The police quickly identified a suspect with a prior arrest for child molestation and apprehended him on Christmas Eve in a
shack in the woods 12 miles from the crime scene. Blood-stained garments were found. Eyewitnesses testified to
having watched the suspect lure the child away. The trial was held on January 3, 1922, and the defendant convicted of
first-degree murder. The case was open and shut, the defense attorney saw no reason to file an appeal. The
prisoner expired in the electric chair on February 7, 1922, 48 days after the murder.
outraged over execution of man who kidnapped, raped, and buried teen alive. Two people will witness the same
traffic accident and come away with very different retellings of what they saw and heard. In a similar vein, a New York
Times story that appeared Friday [11/20/2020] gives the details of a series of heinous crime that occurred in 1994 and the
execution late Thursday of a man found guilty of those crimes. But the order in which the paper presents these details
is problematic. For one thing, a description of the crime is delayed until paragraph eight. It's not until then
that we learn that Orlando Cordia Hall "and others went to the home of a man in Arlington, Texas, who they believed had
reneged on a drug transaction. ... There, the group kidnapped the man's 16-year-old sister, and members of the group later
raped her, beat her over the head with a shovel, soaked her with gasoline and buried her alive." The name of the victim and
details of her horrific last moments on earth — including the trauma of being serially raped — are omitted.
Mitchell executed inside federal prison in Terre Haute. Lezmond Mitchell, the only Native American on death
row, was executed Wednesday evening at the federal prison in Terre Haute. Mitchell, 38, was a member of the Navajo
Nation. He was convicted of killing 63-year-old Alyce Slim, and her 9-year-old granddaughter, Tiffany Lee, in Arizona
in 2001. Everything but Mitchell's head and hands were concealed beneath a teal sheet as he lay on a gurney. Asked
if he had any last words, Mitchell said, "No, I'm good." There were no witnesses on his behalf, only media and victim family
members. Two government officials stood nearby as execution procedures began at 6:03 p.m. They read a list of
Mitchell's convicted charges before administering a lethal injection.
Court declines to block execution of convicted Navajo murderer following tribe objections. The Supreme Court
dismissed tribal objections to a Navajo inmate's scheduled execution, declining to block the convicted murderer's
punishment. On Wednesday [8/26/2020], the high court issued their decision declining to stop 38-year-old Lezmond
Mitchell's execution without any noted objections from justices. Mitchell was found guilty of stabbing an elderly woman
to death before killing her 9-year-old granddaughter by slitting her throat. "The application for stay of execution of
sentence of death presented to Justice Kagan and by her referred to the Court is denied. The petition for a writ of
certiorari is denied," the document reads.
Peterson's death sentence in murder of pregnant wife overturned by California Supreme Court. The California
Supreme Court on Monday overturned the death penalty sentence for Scott Peterson, convicted in the Christmas Eve murder of
his pregnant wife, Laci, and their unborn son, Conner. The court's decision came more than 15 years after Laci, a
Modesto, Calif., school teacher, was killed. Investigators said Peterson dumped his wife's body from his fishing boat
into the San Francisco Bay in 2002. The bodies of Laci and Conner surfaced months later. While the murder
conviction against Peterson stayed in place, the court ordered a new penalty phase trial.
demands death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. President Donald Trump on Sunday demanded
the death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev — whose execution was taken off the table by an
appellate court last week. "Rarely has anybody deserved the death penalty more than the Boston Bomber, Dzhokhar
Tsarnaev," Trump tweeted Sunday afternoon. "The court agreed that this 'was one of the worst domestic terrorist attacks
since the 9/11 atrocities.' Yet the appellate court tossed out the death sentence. So many lives lost..." "and
ruined. The Federal Government must again seek the Death Penalty in a do-over of that chapter of the original trial,"
he added. "Our Country cannot let the appellate decision stand. Also, it is ridiculous that this process is
taking so long!"
Court Overturns Death Sentence For Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. A U.S. Court of Appeals overturned
the death sentence of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on Friday [7/31/2020]. Tsarnaev petitioned the First U.S.
Court of Appeals in December 2019 to overturn his death sentence, arguing that his trial never should have taken place in
Boston. Tsarnaev pleaded guilty to setting a bomb that killed three and injured hundreds of others at the Boston
Marathon on April 15, 2013.
overturns death sentence on Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. An appellate court has tossed the death sentence
and overturned three of the convictions of 2013 Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. The ruling will not result in
Tsarnaev, 27, being freed, and the death penalty can now be revisited in a penalty-phase trial do-over. If federal
prosecutors do not pursue a second death penalty trial, Tsarnaev will remain imprisoned on multiple life sentences that are
not affected by Friday's ruling. The death penalty was invalidated because the trial judge did not adequately screen
jurors for pre-trial bias, the ruling read.
court vacates Boston Marathon bomber's death sentence, orders new penalty trial. A federal appeals court ruled
on Friday to vacate the death sentence of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who along with his brother planted homemade bombs near the
finish of the 2013 Boston Marathon, killing three spectators. The court also ruled to set aside three of his 30
convictions but said he will remain in federal prison for the rest of his life. The appeals judges ruled US District
Court Judge George O'Toole, who oversaw Tsarnaev's trial, "fell short" of his promise to question jurors thoroughly enough to
identify prejudice, "providing sufficient ground to vacate his death sentences."
rules federal executions are back on. The last inmate to be executed by the federal government was Louis Jones
Jr, in 2003 for the rape and murder of Private Tracie McBride. Two years earlier, both Timothy McVeigh and Juan Raul
Garza shuffled off this mortal coil via lethal injection for obvious reasons. Since then, federal implementation of
capital punishment has gone dormant, though a number of convicts have been assigned the death penalty and run out of appeals
in the meantime. President Trump promised last year that the death penalty would resume at the federal level, but the
court cases involved for most of these prisoners have been held up on one technicality or another since then. But as of
last night [7/13/2020], that appears to be about to change. The Supreme Court issued a late-night 5-4 ruling, saying
that the plaintiffs had failed to make their case and the execution of triple-murderer Daniel Lewis Lee can proceed.
Several others are in the queue on Death Row and are scheduled for execution in the coming couple of weeks.
California death row inmates die from coronavirus complications. Two California death row inmates, including
one convicted of killing two children, have died from what appears to be complications of the coronavirus illness COVID-19,
state officials said. Scott Thomas Erskine, who was sentenced to death for killing two boys, ages 13 and 9, in San
Diego in 1993, and Manuel Machado Alvarez, who raped a woman and killed a man he tried to rob in 1987, died Friday, the state
corrections department said. Erskine, 57, had been on death row since 2004 and Alvarez, 59, since 1989.
City Council Unanimously Votes to Repeal Drug Traffic and Prostitution Loitering Laws. The Seattle City Council
unanimously voted to repeal the city's drug traffic and prostitution loitering laws on Monday, sending the bill to Mayor
Jenny Durkan for signing. Two years in the making, the bill seeks to eliminate the ordinances helping police crack down
on loitering by suspected drug dealers and prostitutes — ordinances that a lead sponsor of the repeal bill calls
"manifestly unjust," The Seattle Times reports.
child rapist beaten to death in Wash. state prison. A 70-year-old man convicted of multiple child sex offenses
died Friday [6/12/2020] in a Washington state prison after he was beaten by multiple inmates. The Daily News reported
that Robert Munger was serving his 43-year prison sentence at Airway Heights Corrections Center in Spokane County when he was attacked.
judge orders release of man on death row for 23 years. A Philadelphia judge on Friday ordered the release of
Walter Ogrod, a man who's served 23 years on death row for a slaying prosecutors now don't think he's responsible for.
Philadelphia County Common Pleas Judge Shelley Robins New vacated Ogrod's murder conviction for the 1988 death of 4-year-old
Barbara Jean Horn. Ogrod was sentenced to death in 1996.
actions, not thoughtcrimes. In George Orwell's frightening novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, thoughtcrimes Are
a person's thoughts that contradict or generally do not agree with the approved ideology. The ability to assess a
person's thoughts and mete out punishment for thoughts and not actions obviously poses, in most instances, an impossible
task. In 1998, a black man, James Byrd, was beaten by white men and then dragged to his death behind a pickup truck in
Texas. This event was used extensively in emotionally charged television ads in the year 2000 presidential campaign by
the Democrats to allege that George W. Bush was a racist because he was governor at the time and did not support hate
(thought) crime legislation. In true Texas fashion, the two main actors in this murder were quickly tried and executed
for their actions. Since they were executed, the rationale, thoughts, or reasoning for their murdering Mr. Byrd
were inconsequential, as is appropriate. They were executed for what they did, not what they thought. There would
be no point in executing them twice, once for murder and again for a hate (thought) crime. Dead is dead.
Dems Nadler, AOC & Co. Ask Cuomo to Release 'Significant Amount' of Prisoners to 'Surely Save Lives'.
Jerry Nadler, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and 11 other New York members of the House of Representatives have sent a letter to
NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo asking him to release prisoners — to protect them from the Wuhan virus. A
"significant amount" of them, no less. In the May 22 letter, the signatories argue that "releasing a significant number
of incarcerated people and ensuring compliance with public health standards will surely save lives, both of those who are
incarcerated and of others living in the community."
prisoner released by state over coronavirus charged with robbery. A Bronx man released from prison by
Gov. Andrew Cuomo last month amid the spread of the coronavirus has been charged with beating and robbing a 62-year-old
man — who was so scared of getting the ailment he refused to take the money back when cops made an arrest.
Daniel Vargas, 29, was being held on $50,000 bail on robbery, grand larceny and assault charges after allegedly approaching
the elderly victim on Valentine Avenue in the Bronx shortly after 8 a.m. Tuesday, according to a criminal complaint.
County Sheriff Orders Closure of Gun Stores, Releases 1,700 Inmates. Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva
has released 1,700 inmates from county facilities and is ordering gun stores in the county closed. Fox 11 reports the
gun store closures are part of the coronavirus stay-at-home order while the release of the inmates is an attempt to slow the
spread of the virus in county facilities.
halts execution for inmate who murdered his family amid coronavirus concerns. The top Texas criminal appeals court
decided on Monday [3/16/2020] to stay the execution of a man condemned for killing his family because of coronavirus risks.
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals rejected all grounds of John William Hummel's appeal but decided to stay the execution for
60 days because of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. The court said it was making the decision 'in light of
the current health crisis and the enormous resources needed to address the execution'.
Lawyers look for loopholes and excuses. That's what they do best. Execution
halted for Texas man who killed family after lawyer argues it could "assist in spreading" coronavirus. The
outbreak of the novel coronavirus prompted the top Texas criminal appeals court on Monday to stay for 60 days the scheduled
execution of a man condemned for killing his family. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals rejected all grounds of John
William Hummel's appeal but said it would postpone the scheduled Wednesday execution "in light of the current health crisis
and the enormous resources needed to address the execution." One of the issues that Michael Mowla, Hummel's attorney, had
raised in his efforts to stop the execution was a concern that the process involved with putting Hummel to death "may itself
assist in spreading COVID-19."
is shown horrifying confession of black man facing death penalty in California over 'race hate' slayings of four people. A
man accused of killing four men in California in suspected race hate crimes, told detectives in a recorded interview that he purposely
hunted down white people as his victims. A horrifying recording of Kori Ali Muhammad's confession was played in Fresno, California
Monday [3/9/2020] as a court tried to determine whether the April 2017 murders warrant the death sentence. He explained on the
recording how the killing of motel security guard Carl Williams III, 25, led to the slaying of Zachary Randalls, Mark Gassett, and David
Jackson. 'I didn't want to do nothing to law enforcement so I just found some white men to kill,' Muhammad — who is black — told
police in a chilling video from shortly after his arrest.
prisoner confesses to killing two incarcerated child molesters. A California prison inmate confessed in a
letter that he beat two child molesters to death with a cane while behind bars just hours after his urgent warning to a
counselor that he might become violent was ignored, a newspaper chain reported Thursday [2/20/2020]. Jonathan Watson,
41, confessed in the letter to the Bay Area News Group in Northern California that he clubbed both men in the head on
Jan. 16 at the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison in Corcoran. Prisoner David Bobb,
48, died that day. Graham De Luis-Conti, 62, died three days later at a hospital. Both were serving life
sentences for aggravated sexual assault of a child under 14.
Pardons Board denies pardon for Caril Ann Fugate. Without hearing any testimony, Nebraska's three-member
pardons board rejected a request from Caril Ann Clair, formerly Caril Ann Fugate for a hearing to clear her name. It
was Fugate's second and final request for a pardon since she and Charles Starkweather were convicted of killing 11 people
in a murder spree that ended in Wyoming in 1958.
Executes Death Row Inmate After US Supreme Court Denies Case. Texas executed a death row inmate who was
convicted for the murders of five people, including children, on Thursday evening [2/6/2020] after the U.S. Supreme Court
denied a request to stay the execution. Abel Ochoa, 47, was pronounced dead at 6:48 p.m. local time after he was
administered a lethal dose of pentobarbital at a prison in Huntsville, Texas, according to The Associated Press.
executes blind man for killing ex-girlfriend in 1991. A blind prisoner convicted of killing his estranged girlfriend
by setting her on fire in her car was put to death Thursday [12/5/2019] in Tennessee's electric chair. Lee Hall, 53, became
only the second inmate without sight to be executed in the U.S. since the reinstatement of the nation's death penalty in 1976.
Hall was pronounced dead at 7:26 p.m. at a Nashville maximum-security prison, prison officials said. He chose the electric
chair over Tennessee's preferred execution method of lethal injection — an option available to inmates in the state who were
convicted of crimes before January 1999. He also became the first blind inmate in U.S. modern history to die by electrocution.
court stops Rodney Reed's execution to further review claims of innocence. Texas' highest criminal court halted
Rodney Reed's execution Friday afternoon, sending the now-famous case back to the trial court to further review several
claims — biggest of all that he is innocent of the murder that landed him on death row more than 20 years
ago. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals' ruling came hours after the state's parole board separately recommended
Gov. Greg Abbott delay Reed's Wednesday execution by 120 days. The court's ruling effectively preempts any
gubernatorial involvement since it takes Reed's execution off the calendar and starts a new legal process.
Supreme Court rejects death row inmate's appeal for stay of execution. The Supreme Court of Florida on Tuesday
[11/12/2019] rejected an appeal for a stay of execution for a death row inmate convicted of killing a 14-year-old girl in
1985. James Dailey was sentenced to death in 1987 for killing Shelly Boggio, whose body was found over 30 years
ago stabbed, strangled, drowned and naked floating in waters off Indian Rocks Beach in Pinellas County.
Defender: Illegal Alien Charged with Murdering Four Americans Unfit for Death Penalty Due to Low IQ. An
illegal alien accused of murdering four Americans over the course of a week in Nevada is set to claim that he is
"intellectually disabled" in order to avoid the death penalty. Wilbur Ernesto Martinez-Guzman, a 20-year-old illegal
alien from El Salvador, was charged with murdering 56-year-old Connie Koontz, 74-year-old Sophia Renken, 81-year-old Gerald
David, and his 80-year-old wife, Sharon David, between January 10 and 15 after prosecutors said he was looking to
steal money from his victims to buy more meth. The state of Nevada is seeking the death penalty.
Somebody saved the taxpayers a lot of money. Pedophile
who abused up to 200 children stabbed to death in prison. A notorious British pedophile who was serving 22
concurrent life sentences for abusing 22 children in Malaysia — and up to 200 during an eight-year spree —
was stabbed to death in a prison in England, according to reports. Richard Huckle, 33, was found dead Sunday [10/13/2019]
inside his cell at the high-security Full Sutton Prison in North Yorkshire after being attacked with a makeshift knife, according
to the BBC. "Humberside Police are working closely with the Prison Service to investigate the death of an inmate and at
this time we are treating the death as suspicious," police said in a statement. "It would be inappropriate to comment
further while a police investigation is ongoing."
Step Act beneficiary wanted for murder. It was bound to happen, and sooner rather than later. Joel
Francisco, dubbed by authorities the crown prince of the Almighty Latin Kings gang, was released from prison thanks to the
First Step Act. Now, he is now wanted for murder. Francisco was sentenced in 2005 to life imprisonment for
trafficking in crack cocaine. The Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 reduced sentences for this crime, but not
retroactively. The First Step Act that President Trump signed into law with broad bipartisan support, included a
provision that made the Fair Sentencing Act apply retroactively. As a result, Francisco became eligible for release
from prison. He was released in February. This criminal now stands accused of stabbing a man to death at a hookah
lounge in Providence, Rhode Island.
Death row inmate with
rare condition may suffer excruciatingly painful death, lawyers say. The fate of a convicted killer in Missouri
inmate rests with Gov. Mike Parson, who must decide if the risk posed by Russell Bucklew's unusual medical condition is
grave enough to halt his execution. Bucklew, 51, is scheduled to be put to death Tuesday evening [10/1/2019] for
killing a man during a 1996 crime spree that started with his girlfriend breaking up with him on Valentine's Day. He
suffers from cavernous hemangioma. The rare disease causes blood-filled tumors in his head, neck and throat. A
permanent tracheostomy in his throat helps him breathe. His attorneys say in the clemency request that if one of the
throat tumors bursts, Bucklew could suffer an excruciatingly painful death.
The Editor says...
[#1] He should have thought of this before committing
murder 23 years ago.
[#2] Load him up with fentanyl and demerol, and and he will feel no pain. [#3] The pain
of his execution is momentary. It's nothing compared to what happens after that.
Milano: You Can't Talk About Being Pro-Life If You Support Executing Child-Murderers. [Scroll down to the
facts; for example:] Lezmond Mitchell stabbed to death a 63-year-old grandmother and forced her nine-year-old granddaughter
to sit beside her lifeless body for a 30 to 40-mile drive. Mitchell then slit the girl's throat twice, crushed her head
with 20-pound rocks, and severed and buried both victims' heads and hands. On May 8, 2003, a jury in the U.S. District
Court for the District of Arizona found Mitchell guilty of numerous offenses, including first degree murder, felony murder,
and carjacking resulting in murder, and he was sentenced to death. Mitchell's execution is scheduled to occur on
Dec. 11, 2019.
bishops urge governor to spare Bobby Joe Long. The Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging Gov. Ron DeSantis to
spare the life of convicted Tampa Bay serial rapist and murderer Bobby Joe Long. In a letter to the governor, the bishops asked DeSantis
to commute Long's sentence to life in prison, specifically pointing out mitigating circumstances in Long's case.
Just Insane': Australia's Secret Deal to Take In Rwandan Guerrillas. For more than a decade, the United States
had a problem: three Rwandan men, sitting in jail in Virginia, who had stood accused of brutally murdering tourists in
Africa — but now had a chance of winning release onto American streets. The three had been rounded up after
a bloody 1999 attack that made headlines across three continents, in which two Americans and six other Western tourists on a
gorilla-watching visit to the Ugandan rainforest were killed with machetes and axes. The crime was so horrific that
U.S. prosecutors charged the men under terrorism statutes, extracted them from Rwanda and then took the rare step of
demanding the federal death penalty. But in 2006, the prosecution went off the rails: A judge in Washington ruled
the men's confessions were obtained through torture in Rwandan detention centers, and the case was dropped.
Thomas blasts Stephen Breyer as death penalty divides Supreme Court. Justice Clarence Thomas wanted to make
sure there was no doubt about the heinous crime of Christopher Lee Price, whose attack on an Alabama minister nearly scalped
the man, leaving him to a slow and painful death. In an opinion Monday [5/13/2019], Justice Thomas defended the Supreme
Court's decision to approve Price's execution and blasted fellow Justice Stephen G. Breyer, who had tried to erect roadblocks
on the path to the execution chamber last month.
judge rejects move to stop Bobby Joe Long's execution. A judge has denied an effort to stop the scheduled May
23 execution of Bobby Joe Long, a Tampa Bay area killer who murdered eight women in the 1980s. Hillsborough Circuit
Judge Michelle Sisco issued an order Monday rejecting arguments from Long's defense, including the contention that Florida's
lethal injection drugs might cause Long to have a seizure during the execution. Long, 65, suffers from temporal lobe epilepsy.
wants to execute Robert Joseph Long. His real name is Bobby Joe Long. Does it matter? Last week,
the governor ordered the state to kill a man named "Robert Joseph Long." The name appeared just like that, eight times,
in a death warrant signed April 24 authorizing the state to execute Long for a 1984 Hillsborough County murder. A
letter that accompanied the warrant referred to him as "Robert Joe Long." So did the original sentencing paperwork.
Here's the problem: That's not his legal name. The man the state wants to execute is Bobby Joe Long.
orders execution for Bobby Joe Long, who killed at least eight women in the 1980s. A year ago, Cher Lowther
typed a letter to Gov. Rick Scott, beseeching him to follow through on a promise the state made more than 30 years
earlier to put Bobby Joe Long to death. Long, a notorious serial killer, murdered at least eight women in the Tampa Bay
area in the early 1980s, including Karen Dinsfriend, Lowther's step-sister. He was first sentenced to die in 1985, yet
he remains on death row.
These are the 737 inmates on California's
death row. Gov. Gavin Newsom will sign an executive order on Wednesday to impose a moratorium on the death
penalty in California. The order will prevent the state from putting prisoners to death by granting temporary reprieves
to all 737 condemned inmates on California's death row, the largest in the nation.
Newest Muslim Martyr is a Child Rapist and Killer. Defensive wounds showed that the 15-year-old girl had fought
long and hard for her life. There wasn't enough soft tissue left to show the marks on her flesh, but marks remained on
her wrists and her bones. Hakim had hacked her to death while she had fought desperately to survive. It took two
years to bring him to justice, but not before Hakim tried every trick in the book. Including accusing another man of
the crime. In 1997, Hakim signed a statement, blaming another man and three other women for the attack. When his
partner confessed, then eventually he did too. A year before murdering Tiffany, Hakim had shot and killed Reinhard
Mabins, a 13-year-old boy, and Ernest, his older brother. He was convicted of all three murders. The killing of
the Mabins boys earned Hakim life in prison, while Tiffany's rape and murder put the monster on Death Row. As was
typical, Hakim's lawyers tried every trick to get him off the hook. His father hadn't loved him, his mother was too
busy to spend time with him and he hadn't understood how serious the case was. Finally, there was one last card to
play. And Hakim's lawyers took that card to the Supreme Court. At the last minute, Hakim wanted his Imam with him
in the death chamber. Yusef Maisonet, the imam of Masjid As Salaam, was not familiar with the safety protocols of the
death penalty process, and was not allowed to be in the actual chamber. The case went up to the courts, up to the
Supreme Court, which turned Hakim down. Instead Imam Maisonet met with Hakim before the monster was put down and taught
him how to die like a good Muslim.
death row inmate's execution in limbo as courts weigh religious requests. An Alabama man who was set to be
executed by the state Thursday night is now waiting out his punishment while a federal court argues over his religious
requests. Domineque Ray, who was sentenced to death for raping and murdering 15-year-old Tiffany Harville in 1995
Selma, was not allowed to bring his holy book into his death cell with him after he was transferred there Tuesday, according
to AL.com. After a filing from his lawyers, Ray was given access to a Quran, but he still has one more request:
his imam, or Muslim spiritual leader.
The Editor says...
I believe he will be surrounded by imams right after he's executed. If you get my drift.
executes inmate, 61, who killed police officer in adult-bookstore robbery. A Texas man convicted of shooting
and killing a Houston police officer in 1988 during a failed robbery at an adult bookstore was executed Wednesday
[1/30/2019], officials said. The convict, Robert Jennings, 61, was pronounced dead at 6:33 p.m., 18 minutes
after receiving a lethal injection and some 30 years after fatally shooting 24-year-old officer Elston Howard.
Nevada Death Row Inmate
Scott Dozier Dies by Apparent Suicide. Scott Dozier, a death row inmate in Nevada, was found dead in his cell
Saturday of an apparent suicide, state department of corrections officials said. Dozier, 48, was hanging from a bed
sheet tied to an air vent in his cell at Ely State Prison, the department said in a news release.
death-row inmate found dead in cell after execution called off. A Nevada inmate sentenced to death in 2007 for
committing drug-related murders in Phoenix and Las Vegas, and who had tried several times to kill himself after two scheduled
lethal injections were postponed, was found dead hanging from a bedsheet Saturday, officials said. Scott Raymond
Dozier, 48, was found unresponsive in the death-row cell he was housed in by himself at the state's maximum-security prison
in Ely, the Nevada Department of Corrections said.
rejects Jerry Brown's clemency orders for 3 more California killers. The California Supreme Court this week
rejected three more of Gov. Jerry Brown's recommendations to commute sentences of longtime prison inmates who he
believed had reformed behind bars, including a Sacramento man who beat a man to death in 1997. The court in recent weeks
now has denied 10 of Brown's clemency actions, the first time it has exercised that power in half a century. The latest
denials followed Brown's annual Christmas Eve clemency actions that included 143 pardons and 131 commutations.
Immigrant, Held on Murder Charge, Released Because of 'Clerical Error'. A 17-year-old illegal immigrant —
behind bars on a murder charge — was released from a local North Carolina jail that just pulled out of an immigration
screening program with Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE). Sergio Coello-Perez, a Mexican national, was released from the
Mecklenburg County Jail on Thursday after seven months in custody. He was released with a written promise to appear in court
and to wear a 24-hour electronic monitoring bracelet, WBTV reported Friday [12/28/2018]. On Friday, the teen was booked into
the jail again.
error' leads to murder defendant's release from jail. According to court records, a clerical error in court led
to the release of a Mecklenburg County inmate facing a first degree murder charge. Sergio Coello-Perez had a day and
half of freedom that started Thursday [12/27/2018 morning. He had spent six months behind bars.
Mumia Abu-Jamal granted appeal, spurring outrage from widow of slain police officer. The widow of a Philadelphia
police officer who was gunned down 37 years ago in the line of duty is "outraged" over a judge's decision last week to
grant her husband's killer a chance to appeal his conviction. On Thursday [1/27/2018], Judge Leon Tucker granted Mumia
Abu-Jamal another opportunity to appeal his 1981 conviction in the death of Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel Faulkner.
Abu-Jamal spent three decades on death row before his sentence in the shooting death of Faulkner was thrown out over flawed
man who killed newlywed during robbery is executed. A Texas man who fatally shot a husband and sexually
assaulted his wife during a 1993 robbery was executed Tuesday evening. Alvin Braziel Jr., 43, received a lethal
injection at the state penitentiary in Huntsville for the 1993 slaying of 27-year-old Douglas White, who was attacked as he
and his wife walked on a jogging trail.
Man Who Shot and Killed Newlywed in 1993 Is Executed. The state of Texas executed a Dallas man for the murder
of a newlywed man more than 25 years ago. Alvin Braziel Jr., 43, died via lethal injection at the state prison in
Huntsville for the 1993 killing of 27-year-old Douglas White, who was attacked by Braziel while walking on a jogging
trail. The motive in the killing was robbery and rape, according to reports.
electrocutes second inmate in 2 months. A Tennessee inmate became the second person to die in the state's
electric chair in just over a month Thursday [12/6/2018], nearly two decades after Tennessee adopted lethal injection as
its preferred method of execution.
row inmate says, 'Let's rock,' before dying on Tennessee electric chair. Edmund Zagorski, the convicted killer
who opted for the electric chair instead of lethal injection, was asked if he had any last words before dying and he
responded, "Let's rock." [...] Zagorski, who was convicted of the April 1983 killings of two men during a drug deal by
slitting their throats, called the electric chair the lesser of the two evils in the state.
inmate Edmund Zagorski moved to 'death watch' as execution nears. As his planned Thursday [11/1/2018] execution
draws near, Tennessee death row inmate Edmund Zagorski has been moved to "death watch," according to reports.
Meanwhile, the maker of the state's electric chair, which is expected to be used for the first time since 2007, says he's
worried that the device might not work as planned.
inmate cracks traffic joke before execution. A South Dakota inmate, who was executed Monday evening
[10/29/2018] for beating a guard to death during a failed prison escape, used his final moments to crack a joke. [...]
Berget, who killed Ronald "R.J." Johnson in 2011 with a pipe at the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls. He
was the state's fourth execution since it reinstituted the death penalty in 1979. Johnson was killed on his 63rd
birthday and was nearing the end of a nearly 24-year career as a guard.
executes child killer Billy Ray Irick with drug that inflicts 'torturous pain'. Tennessee has carried out its
first execution in nearly a decade using a controversial cocktail of drugs including a lethal ingredient described by the
Supreme Court as "chemically burning at the stake". Billy Ray Irick, an inmate convicted of the 1985 rape and murder of
seven-year-old Paula Dyer, received a three-drug injection on Thursday night [8/9/2018] after the US Supreme Court denied a
final request to stay his execution.
The Editor says...
Maybe they should serve jalapeño soup for dinner on death row, whenever there's an execution, just to give everyone a foretaste of things to come.
The lesson for the rest of the Tennessee lowlife morons is clear: If you don't want to be chemically burned at the stake, don't rape and murder a
in BART fatal stabbing deserves death penalty, past victim says. The suspect who allegedly stabbed two sisters,
killing one, at a rail station in Oakland, Calif., deserves the death penalty, a past victim of the suspect says, according
to a report. Nearly a decade ago, John Cowell, 27 — the BART stabbing suspect — along with three
other teens, beat up Shane Glick, 51, outside his Concord, Calif., home, Glick told the San Francisco Chronicle.
plans execution with never-used-before drug cocktail. The new execution protocol appears to be an updated
version of a procedural plan submitted to Judge Togliatti last September. The new one, dated June 11, blacks out some
details, including times that family members, witnesses and media may arrive at Ely State Prison, around 400km north of Las
Vegas. It substitutes midazolam for expired prison stocks of diazepam, a sedative commonly known as Valium. The
plan doubles the number of possible injections of the sedative from four for diazepam to 10 for midazolam. The scheduled
doses and delivery of fentanyl and cisatracurium were not changed. [Scott] Dozier has repeatedly said he wants to die
and he doesn't really care if he suffers.
pick killer' Danny Paul Bible executed by lethal injection, despite firing squad, nitrogen gas pleas. A Texas
prisoner dubbed the "ice pick killer" will now "burn in hell for eternity," a family member of one of his victims says, after
he was put to death Wednesday night [6/27/2018] by lethal injection — with officials ignoring his unusual request
to be executed by firing squad or nitrogen gas. Danny Paul Bible was killed Wednesday night after unsuccessful appeals
argued his health issues made it likely his execution would be botched and cause him unconstitutional pain. [...] Bible was a
drifter with a record of violence in several states when he was arrested in Fort Myers, Florida, in 1999 for a rape in Louisiana.
He told detectives in Louisiana about four Texas killings — including the death of a 4-month-old boy — and
at least nine rapes, including five in San Jacinto County northeast of Houston. The four slaying victims included
20-year-old Inez Deaton, a friend of Bible's cousin who was found on the banks of a Houston bayou in 1979. Investigators
determined she had been raped and fatally stabbed with an ice pick.
Texas inmate wants execution by firing squad or gas. A Texas death row inmate who confessed to four slayings
and at least nine rapes is set for lethal injection Wednesday amid concerns from his lawyers that his health issues make it
likely his execution will cause him unconstitutional pain.
The Editor says...
As usual, the criminal puts up a fuss over his pain, and neither he nor the newspapers say anything about his victims' pain.
The Constitution, as amended, prohibits cruel and unusual punishment but does not prohibit inflicting pain during an execution.
There is therefore no such thing as "unconstitutional pain."
York is freeing another cop killer from prison. Another Black Liberation Army cop-killer is getting
parole — Robert Hayes, a cold-blooded thug who killed a transit cop in a senseless subway platform shootout in
1973, then turned a sawed-off shotgun on the five cops who later busted into his hideout. Transit patrolman and father
of two Sidney Thompson, 37, lost his life for merely trying to arrest the then-23-year-old Hayes and a second BLA member for
jumping a turnstile. Sentenced to 35 to life in 1974 — before state law mandated life without parole for
cop-killers — Hayes will get out as early as July 24, The [New York] Post has learned.
school shooting suspect Dimitrios Pagourtzis won't be executed, could be free in 40 years. The teenager accused
of the massacre at a Texas high school Friday could be out of prison in 40 years and will definitely not be executed.
Dimitrios Pagourtzis is 17 and the Supreme Court has barred both the death penalty and life without parole as cruel and
unusual punishment for criminals under 18, according to a legal analysis by USA Today. The 2005 case of Roper v.
Simmons said juveniles could not be executed, even if they're legally considered adults in their state, because they are too
immature and their brains underdeveloped. The 2012 ruling in Miller v. Alabama extended the logic to permanent
The Editor says...
The victims are just as dead, whether the shooter is 17 or 40 years old. The Supreme Court has
negated the deterrent effect of the death penalty for anyone under 18.
knew the danger, went anyway. Police officer Sean Gannon is a hero — plain and simple. His
life should not have been cut so short at the young age of 32. Gannon paid the ultimate sacrifice to keep our community
safe when a thug allegedly opened fire on him while searching a home the criminal was hiding out in. It is unfortunate
the death penalty is not allowed in Massachusetts because Thomas Latanowich doesn't deserve the right to breathe and is the
perfect candidate for lethal injection.
rallies held over parole of convicted cop killer. Dueling rallies were held Friday on the controversial
decision to release convicted cop killer Herman Bell from prison. Bell was a member of the radical Black Liberation
Army who killed Officers Waverly Jones and Joseph Piagentini after luring them to a Harlem housing project with a phony 911
call. Jones died instantly from a single shot. But Piagentini was shot 22 times after begging for his
life. Bell was captured and convicted in 1971 and has been behind bars ever since.
sentence reinstated for only woman on Mississippi's death row. A divided federal appeals court has reinstated
the death sentence of Mississippi's only woman on death row, after her capital murder conviction was previously overturned by
federal judges. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 9-5 Tuesday that allegations of racial bias in jury
selection were insufficient and shouldn't have led to Lisa Jo Chamberlin's sentence being reversed. The ruling came
nearly three years after a federal court ruling granted her a new trial in a 2004 double homicide in Hattiesburg, Miss., the
Clarion Ledger reported.
Depravity in California. In November 2016, California voters passed Proposition 57, the Public Safety and
Rehabilitation Act. Championed by Governor Jerry Brown, the measure expanded parole possibilities for nonviolent
offenders and barred prosecutors from filing juvenile cases in adult court. Last month, California's Supreme Court
ruled that Proposition 57 could be applied retroactively. On those grounds, California's Third Court of Appeals
"conditionally reversed" the conviction of one of the most violent criminals in state history and expanded his prospects for
early release. Daniel Marsh was just 15 on April 14, 2013, when he broke into the Davis home of 87-year-old Oliver
"Chip" Northup, an attorney and popular bluegrass musician, and his 76-year-old wife, Claudia Maupin, a pastoral associate at
the Davis Unitarian Church, where the couple met. A police report said that the two were killed "in a way that manifested
exceptional depravity," which was no exaggeration. The autopsy report runs 16 pages and 6,658 words, noting that
the murderer stabbed Maupin 67 times and Northup 61 times.
avoid death penalty, Florida cop killer will claim brain damage. The man who killed Tarpon Springs police
Officer Charles Kondek in 2014 suffered from head trauma that likely impaired his judgment at the time of the shooting,
according to his attorneys. That diagnosis is how the defense hopes to convince a jury to spare Marco Antonio Parilla,
Jr. from being sentenced to death. Defense attorney Bjorn Brunvand told the Tampa Bay Times his client has
"brain abnormalities" that can affect decision-making.
Kids or Confiscate Guns? The perpetrator, the sick and evil 19-year-old who killed 17 innocents with a gun is
said to be contrite. Having confessed, he faces life in prison. For the next half-century, [he] will be fed,
clothed, sheltered and medicated at the expense of Florida taxpayers, including the families of those he murdered. [His]
punishment seems neither commensurate with his crimes nor a deterrent for sick and evil minds contemplating another Columbine.
[...] [This man] should never have been allowed to purchase or possess a gun. He was angry, alienated, isolated.
Police had been to his family home to deal with complaints 39 times. Yet he had no arrest record when he purchased
One Single Person To Blame For The Florida School Shooting. The shooter's defense team says the poor guy is
"troubled" and they're "exploring the possibility of autism." I don't personally care about his mental troubles or whatever
alleged psychiatric disorder they can tag on him (and I'm sure they can tag him with several). Here's the only thing we need
to know: Did he know what he was doing when he did it, and did he know it was wrong? Well, his defense team (stupidly)
has also said that the shooter is deeply sorry for his actions and he understands the gravity of what he did. In other words,
he's not crazy. He's fully responsible for his behavior. 100%. A crazy man is a man who has no concept of
reality and truly does not understand that he isn't supposed to kill people.
jailed in Pasco shooting. Qiu Feng Ke says Edward Tudor was "just unlucky" to become the one he shot to death
this week in their Holiday neighborhood. It could have been a past neighbor who had treated him poorly. Or, Qiu
said, if he moved away from Richboro Drive, it might have been the next one. It was Tudor, his neighbor of four years,
who pushed him too far, Qiu said Thursday, handcuffed in his orange and white striped jumpsuit inside the Pasco County Jail,
where he is being held without bail on a first-degree murder charge.
pursue execution for Seminole Heights killings? Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren announced he will
seek the death penalty if accused Seminole Heights mass killer Howell Emanuel Donaldson III is convicted. Yes, the
killing spree for which Donaldson stands accused was horrific. He is accused of shooting four people to death during a
killing rage that rattled Seminole Heights and the entire Tampa Bay community. As Warren framed it in a news conference
announcing the decision, "The death penalty is for the worst of the worst, crimes that are far more egregious than the
typical murder. And that's what we have here."
"Tourniquet Killer" put to death in first execution of 2018. Texas carried out the nation's first execution of
2018 Thursday evening, giving lethal injection to a man who became known as Houston's "Tourniquet Killer" because of his
signature murder technique on four female victims. Anthony Allen Shore was put to death for one of those slayings, the
1992 killing of a 21-year-old woman whose body was dumped in the drive-thru of a Houston Dairy Queen.
Killer' executed in Huntsville. Shore was nicknamed the "Tourniquet Killer" because he used homemade
tourniquets to strangle his victims. Police eventually linked to Shore to the murders through his DNA, which was taken
during a separate child rape investigation.
Self-inflicted capital punishment: Convicted
War Criminal Drinks Poison in Courtroom. Convicted war criminal Slobodan Praljak started shouting [11/29/2017]
as the presiding judge delivered the tribunal's final decision, which would have kept Praljak behind bars for 20 years.
The 72-year-old yelled, "Slobodan Praljak is not a war criminal! I reject this verdict!" Ignoring an instruction to
sit down, Praljak then drank an unidentified liquid from a small bottle, drawing confused stares from his attorneys and others
in the chamber.
Ohio death row inmate will get 'special, wedge-shaped pillow' to help him breathe during execution. A sick Ohio
inmate will receive a wedge-shaped pillow to help him breathe as he's put to death this week, officials said. Alva
Campbell, 69, a death row prisoner who has argued he was too ill for lethal injection is slated to die by injection
Wednesday. Campbell has severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder as the result of a decades-long two-pack-a-day
smoking habit. Campbell's attorneys say he uses a walker, relies on a colostomy bag, requires four breathing treatments
a day and may have lung cancer. They have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to stop Wednesday's [11/15/2017] execution,
because of his poor health, a motion opposed by the state.
The Editor says...
This is the latest in a long series of legal ploys, e.g., my client is too
fat to fit into the electric chair, my client is too stupid to be executed, my client is too sick to die, etc.
Terrorist Gets Death Penalty. Speaking to the jury that had already convicted Alton Alexander Nolen of first-degree murder
in the death of Colleen Hufford, Cleveland County, Oklahoma, district attorney Greg Mashburn said of Nolen, "He wants the death penalty.
Give him what he wants." Mashburn added that Nolen wanted the death penalty because he believes "something good" is waiting for him
on the "other side," so Mashburn pleaded for the jurors to "give it to him, and let him find out." The jury deliberated three hours
before returning a death penalty verdict for Nolen, who had beheaded co-worker Hufford with a knife in 2015. In Oklahoma, juries have
three options in a first-degree murder conviction: life in prison, life in prison without the possibility of parole, and death.
Supreme Court backs Gov. Scott in Orlando death-penalty dispute. Gov. Rick Scott was within his
executive authority in reassigning more than two dozen potential death penalty cases away from an Orlando state attorney who
declared she wouldn't pursue the punishment for any case prosecuted in her district, the Florida Supreme Court ruled Thursday
[8/31/2017]. In a 5-2 ruling, justices said Aramis Ayala's "blanket" opposition to seeking the death penalty negates her
argument of having exercised prosecutorial discretion.
executes convicted killer using new drug. Florida on Thursday [8/24/2017] put a man to death with an anesthetic never used
before in a U.S. lethal injection, carrying out its first execution in more than 18 months on an inmate convicted of two
racially motivated murders. Authorities said 53-year-old Mark Asay, the first white man executed in Florida for the
killing of a black man, was pronounced dead at 6:22 p.m. Thursday at the state prison in Starke. Asay received a
three-drug injection that began with the anesthetic etomidate. Though approved by the Florida Supreme Court, etomidate
has been criticized by some as being unproven in an execution. Etomidate replaced midazolam, which became harder to
acquire after many drug companies began refusing to provide it for executions.
executes man for 1982 murder. [75-year-old Tommy] Arthur was convicted of killing riverboat engineer Troy
Wicker, who was fatally shot as he slept in his bed in the north Alabama city of Muscle Shoals.
executes first inmate since 2005. Ledell Lee's execution was the first in the state since 2005. He was
pronounced dead at 11:56 p.m. Thursday [4/20/2017], four minutes before his death warrant was due to expire. [...] Lee,
51, was put on death row for the 1993 death of his neighbor Debra Reese, whom Lee struck 36 times with a tire tool her husband
had given her for protection. Lee was arrested less than an hour after the killing after spending some of the $300 he had
stolen from Reese.
executions: Who's on death row? [For example,] Kenneth Dewayne Williams, [who] was initially scheduled to
be executed on Thursday, April 27. [...] He was convicted of murdering Cecil Boren in 1999. Three weeks after his
conviction, Williams escaped by hiding in a container of hog slop being ferried from a prison kitchen to a prison hog farm
outside the main gates. While in prison, Williams said he had killed another person in 1998. He gave a one-hour,
15-minute speech in front of the parole board where he accepted full responsibility for his actions.
Court blocks death sentence over racial bias. The Supreme Court blocked the execution of a Texas murderer Wednesday [2/22/2017]
because of racially discriminatory testimony presented by his own defense team. The 6-2 ruling was the second in the court's new term to
overturn a death sentence, and it could be a harbinger of things to come. The justices heard another death penalty case from Texas in
November that hinges on a prisoner's intellectual disability.
sex offender who killed 4 O.C. women is sentenced to death. Steven Dean Gordon, the serial killer who says he
deserves to die for his crimes, found no disagreement last year from the jury nor, on Friday [2/3/2017], from the judge.
Orange County Superior Court Judge Patrick H. Donahue sentenced Gordon to death for the abduction and murder of four women
who had been working as prostitutes in Santa Ana and Anaheim in 2013 and 2014. In December, a jury convicted the 47-year-old
Gordon of the murders and voted that he should die.
Roof Sentenced to Death for Charleston Church Massacre. An admitted white supremacist was condemned to death
Tuesday for massacring nine black worshipers who'd invited him to study the Bible with them at a Charleston, S.C., church,
ending a two-phase federal trial that exposed the killer's hate-fueled motives and plumbed the chasms of grief left by the
victims' deaths. The jury, the same that convicted Dylann Roof in the murders last month, announced its verdict after
deliberating less than three hours.
Hell gets ready
to welcome Charles Manson. Charles Manson is closing in on death's door, a source familiar with the matter told
The [New York] Post on Monday [1/9/2017]. "I don't think he'll be around too much longer, but he is able to talk in his
current condition," the California Corrections Department source said, referring to the infamous cult leader's health
crisis. Last week, Manson, 82, was taken out of Corcoran State Prison in California's Central Valley and rushed to a
hospital in Bakersfield about 60 miles away for emergency surgery to stop his intestines from bleeding, sources told
Dylann Roof. The guy made the decision to load the gun, walk into a church, and shot ten people, murdering
nine. All were killed by multiple gunshots fired at close range. During the shooting, he taunted the victims,
"Y'all want something to pray about? I'll give you something to pray about." He [surely] seemed to understand the
consequences of his actions then! One of his victims was an 87-year-old church choir member. A five-year-old girl
survived the shooting by pretending to be dead. If doing something like that doesn't earn a seat on the electric chair,
what does? I don't care if Roof did it because he hates blacks, he hates churches, he hates God, or if he thinks his
dog told him to do it. The consequence is the same. I keep hearing we have to look inside Roof's head and try to
understand. Why? It doesn't change what he did.
judge orders state to provide Mumia Abu-Jamal with hepatitis C treatment. A federal judge on Tuesday [1/3/2017] ruled that
Mumia Abu-Jamal should be provided new medications by the state to treat his hepatitis C infection. U.S. District Judge
Robert D. Mariani ordered that Abu-Jamal, who is serving life in prison for the 1981 killing of Philadelphia Police Officer Daniel
Faulkner, must be seen by a doctor within 14 days to determine if there is a medical reason he should not get the expensive
drugs. If Abu-Jamal is medically cleared, the state must provide him with recently developed direct-acting antiviral medication,
also known as DDA.
The Editor says...
Please note that the man whose health is such a great concern is a cop killer and was sentenced to death in 1982. In my opinion,
he should have been executed no later than 1983.
Sleeper" Lonnie Franklin Jr. Sentenced to Death. The former L.A. garbage collector who earned the name
"the Grim Sleeper" after a string of murders between 1985 and 2007 was sentenced to death in Los Angeles Superior Court today
[8/10/2016]. Judge Kathleen Kennedy today told 63-year-old Lonnie Franklin Jr., "You shall suffer the death penalty,"
during a sentencing hearing. The last time a prisoner was executed by the state was in 2006.
'Grim Sleeper' is sentenced to death for string of murders. "This is not a sentence of vengeance," Superior
Court Judge Kathleen Kennedy told Franklin as relatives of his victims looked on, some of them in tears. "It's
justice." Franklin, 63, was convicted earlier this year of killing nine women and a teenage girl from 1985 to 2007.
During the penalty phase of his trial, prosecutors connected him to several additional slayings. Detectives believe he
may have killed at least 25 women. The judge read the names of the 10 victims Franklin was found guilty of
killing. In each case, Kennedy told him, "You shall suffer the death penalty."
Sleeper' Lonnie Franklin Jr. Sentenced to Death for Murders of Los Angeles Women. Lonnie Franklin Jr.,
known by the nickname the "Grim Sleeper," was sentenced to death today in connection with the killings of women in the Los
Angeles area from 1985 to 2007. His trial began in February of this year, more than three decades after the death of
the first victim. The victims, all between the ages of 15 and 35, were strangled or shot and left in alleyways near
Franklin's home in South L.A., The Associated Press said.
The Editor says...
This man started killing women 30 years ago, and it may be another 30 years before he is executed — if he doesn't die
of old age first. The death penalty isn't much of a deterrent if the public perceives that the state isn't serious about it.
El Chapo is safe, but... Lynch:
Justice Dept. to seek death penalty against Dylann Roof. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced Tuesday [5/24/2016] that
the Justice Department would seek the death penalty against Charleston church shooting suspect Dylann Roof. "The nature of the alleged
crime and the resulting harm compelled this decision," Lynch said in written statement. Last July, Lynch announced federal hate crime
charges against the then-21-year-old suspect, alleging that Roof sought to ignite racial tensions across the country by targeting Emanuel
African Methodist Episcopal Church because of its local and historical significance.
lord El Chapo will finally be extradited to the U.S. under guarantee he won't face the death penalty. Mexico's Foreign Relations
Department has approved the extradition of convicted drug lord Joaquin 'El Chapo' Guzman to the United States. The department said in a
statement Friday [5/20/2016] that the US has provided 'adequate guarantees' that Guzman would not face the death penalty. Mexico has
abolished capital punishment and does not extradite its citizens if they face possible execution. The process can still be appealed,
meaning it could be weeks or months before the Sinaloa cartel leader may be sent to the US, where he is wanted in multiple jurisdictions on
charges related to drug trafficking and organized crime.
who killed Plant City worker wants execution sped up. Wayne Doty, who shot to death a worker at a manufacturing
plant in Plant City in 1996, wants to die in Florida's electric chair. Immediately. The twice-convicted
killer — Doty murdered a fellow inmate at Florida State Prison, also in 1996 — doesn't want to be
represented by attorneys and refuses to appeal his death sentence.
executes man who said he drank victim's blood. A South Texas man was executed Wednesday forthe 1998 slaying of
a 12-year-old boy whose blood the convicted killer said he drank after beating the seventh-grader with a pipe and slitting
his throat. Pablo Lucio Vasquez told police he was drunk and high when voices convinced him to kill David Cardenas in
Donna, a Texas border town about 225 miles south of San Antonio. He also told detectives in a videotaped statement
that he drank some of the boy's blood.
delay, serial killer Oscar Ray Bolin executed by lethal injection. Oscar Ray Bolin, convicted of murdering three Tampa-area women
in 1986, was executed by lethal injection Thursday night [1/7/2016] at Florida State Prison. Bolin, 53, was pronounced dead at 10:16 p.m.,
11 minutes after the execution began. Scheduled for 6 p.m., Bolin's execution was delayed by the U.S. Supreme Court as it
considered a last-minute appeal.
day arrives for Oscar Ray Bolin. A former carnival worker who was convicted of killing three Bay-area women and then married a member
of his defense team was executed Thursday night [1/7/2016] after 30 years of trials, guilty verdicts and appeals.
US Death Row Inmate Denied Beer as Last
Request. A death-row prisoner in Georgia, to be executed Thursday, requested six beers instead of food as his
last wish, a request that prison authorities refused Wednesday [11/18/2015]. "His request was declined as alcohol is
a contraband item," Georgia Department of Corrections in Jackson said in a statement.
The Editor says...
The lethal drugs they're about to administer are probably contraband items, too. So what?
If the condemned man wants a case of whiskey and a carton of cigarettes instead of his last meal,
why not give it to him? If he'd rather be hanged than put in the electric chair, why not
let him have that choice?
US high court grapples with
racism in jury selection. Timothy Foster has spent nearly 30 years on Georgia's death row. On Monday [11/1/2015], his
lawyer will speak before the Supreme Court to fight for his life, pointing to endemic racism in US jury selection and the death penalty.
man who murdered 4 family members to be executed tonight. Jerry Correll is set to be executed [10/29/2015] for
fatally stabbing his 5-year-old daughter, his ex-wife, her mother and her sister 30 years ago at a home along Tampico Drive
in Orlando. Correll is the first death row inmate in Florida to be executed since January.
The Editor says...
The Associated Press once again shows its bias, starting with the headline in this story. The execution was about the
murder of an innocent man. It was not about the eight dollars that changed hands.
juror firmly opposed death penalty for theater shooter James Holmes. Nine of the 12 jurors in the Colorado theater
shooting trial wanted to execute James Holmes, but one was steadfastly against the death penalty and two others wavering, a
juror told reporters after the verdict was announced. Because the 12 jurors failed to unanimously agree that Holmes
should be executed, he will be sentenced to life in prison without parole for the 2012 attack on a midnight screening of a
Batman movie in Aurora that also left 70 injured. "Mental illness played into the decision more than anything else,"
said the woman, who would not give her name.
Dylann Roof indicted on
federal hate crime charges in Charleston church shooting. While neither federal nor
state prosecutors have decided whether to pursue the ultimate punishment, Wednesday's [7/22/2015] indictment
hinted at federal prosecutors' intentions to seek the death penalty. Citing U.S. laws on the death
penalty, it stated that Roof intentionally targeted vulnerable people and meant to kill "more than one
person in a single criminal episode."
should hang Edward Snowden, says former spy panel senator. The U.S. should publicly
hang leaker Edward Snowden if and when he falls into the government's hands, according to the former
top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee. "We need to hang him on the courthouse
square as soon was we get our hands on him," retired Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) — who
served as vice chairman of the powerful intelligence panel before stepping down from Congress last
year — said during an appearance at the University of Georgia this month. "I hope
none of you have any sympathy for him," he told students at the Terry College of Business.
Marathon bomber apologizes, formally sentenced to death. The outcome of Wednesday morning's [6/24/2015] federal sentencing
hearing was a foregone conclusion after the jury decided to impose the death penalty last month. The 21-year-old former college
student is the first person to be handed a death sentence in a federal terrorism case since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
The Editor says...
It may be the first federal terrorism prosecution since 9/11/2001, but there have been numerous cases of Islamic terrorism since then.
inmate, 67, executed for slayings 31 years ago. A 67-year-old man convicted of killing
four men more than three decades ago was executed Wednesday, making him the oldest of the 526 Texas
prisoners put to death since the state resumed carrying out capital punishment in 1982.
Tsarnaev: No Better Argument for Capital Punishment. On the one side are those who
believe that just because someone brutally rapes and murders an innocent woman or murders and maims
more than 260 people does not mean we in turn should respond as if we are ourselves equally
uncivilized. [...] On the other side are those whose logic compels them to believe that only a
hopelessly naïve or frighteningly misguided society would want to see such vicious killers free to
live, to study, and to be provided food, shelter and health care at taxpayer expense for the rest of
their lives. Even the staunchest opponent of capital punishment, once victimized or having lost a
loved one at the hands of truly evil miscreants, typically fall into this group.
A campaign to drum up sympathy for cold-blooded killers: Justices
to Hear Challenge That Argues Lethal-Injection Drug Causes Agony. The use of a lethal-injection drug
involved in prolonged, apparently agonizing executions last year will come under scrutiny in the Supreme Court on
Wednesday [4/29/2015] as the justices hear a case brought by three condemned prisoners from Oklahoma. The
prisoners, convicted murderers, are challenging the use of the sedative midazolam as the first step in executions.
Lawyers for the prisoners, with the support of many medical experts, say that even if properly administered, the drug
cannot reliably cause deep unconsciousness before the injection of other extremely painful agents that cause death.
Deserves the Death Penalty, and So Might Michael Slager. How about now? Are you in
favor of the death penalty now? I ask because the preferred argument from opponents of the death penalty
is doubt: We can never be sure; look at all of the people released from death row; we can't afford
to risk ending a single innocent life. None of those arguments apply to Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Warren is Pro-Life! Yesterday Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was convicted
on all counts for his murderous act of terrorism. He could get the death penalty... but not if Mass.
Senator and left-wing hero Elizabeth Warren has her way. She wants the terrorist's life spared.
Fool of the Week:
Boston bombers' mom. The Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was convicted this
week on all 30 counts levied against him. He will begin the sentencing phase of his trial
very soon. Should he be put to death? Well if being convicted on 17 counts that carry
a possible penalty of death is a qualification, I would say so. — After all, if you have the
death penalty law there's not a more appropriate case to apply it to. However, Tsarnaev's mother
blames the United States for the troubles her terrorist son is in.
Executes Killer Robert Ladd After Low-IQ Arguments Rejected. Texas on Thursday [1/29/2015]
executed a man convicted of fatally beating a mentally disabled woman — after the U.S.
Supreme Court rejected arguments that he has an IQ of 67 and should be exempt from the death penalty.
[...] Ladd was sentenced to death for hammering, strangling and setting ablaze 38-year-old Vicki Ann
Garner in 1996 — while he was on parole for a 1980 stabbing and arson that killed a woman
and two children. Ladd's lawyers from the American Civil Liberties Union said his IQ fell below
the threshold generally accepted for impairment, which prosecutors disputed.
Court Halts Oklahoma Execution of Richard Glossip, Two Others. The U.S. Supreme Court
issued stays of execution Wednesday [1/28/2015] for three Oklahoma death-row inmates whose challenge
to the state's lethal-injection formula will be heard in the spring. [...] For the first time since
2008, the high court has agreed to hear a challenge to the legality of lethal injection. The
Oklahoma case centers on the first of three drugs administered to a condemned inmate — the
sedative midazolam, which opponents say isn't strong enough to protect a prisoner from the other two
chemicals used. Midazolam has featured in at least three executions that did not unfold as planned.
body is on fire': Convicted baby killer. Oklahoma's first execution since it botched
the lethal injection of a death row inmate 10 months ago saw convicted baby killer Charles Frederick
Warner exclaim from the death chamber: "My body is on fire." In a disturbing sequence, the
47-year-old Warner made the claim after getting a dose of the sedative midazolam followed by involuntary
twitching after the lethal injection was administered. He stopped breathing seven minutes later.
The Editor says...
You see, the problem with executions is that they cannot be both instantaneous and painless.
(Surely the people murdered by those who are now residents of death row had experiences that were neither
painless or quick.) If the goal is to strike a balance between the two, the firing squad and the
guillotine are probably better than intravenous infusion of chemicals prescribed by the state.
It would be far more effective to give death row inmates unlimited access to morphine, heroin, cocaine,
or any other drugs they want, and let them handle the rest.
Texas to execute man who lawyers
say is delusional. No one disputes that Scott Panetti — heavily armed, head shaved and wearing
camouflage — shot and killed his in-laws at their Texas Hill Country home, showering his estranged wife and
3-year-old daughter in blood.
The Editor says...
Read the description of this guy's crime and then tell me that his religion is an important part of his life.
execution in Missouri this year in what activists say was racially biased case. The
man who killed a suburban Kansas City, Mo., gas station attendant in front of the worker's 8-year-old
stepdaughter in 1994 was put to death just past midnight on Wednesday at the state prison in Bonne Terre,
the ninth execution in the Missouri this year. With Leon Taylor's death by lethal injection, 2014
ties 1999 for having the most executions in a year in Missouri.
Takes Death Penalty off Table for Gang Members Charged with Killing Cop. On November 14,
federal prosecutors made it clear that Attorney General Eric Holder has "taken the death penalty off the
table" for four men charged in the gang-related murder of Waynesboro, Virginia, police officer, Captain
Kevin Quick. [...] Prosecutor Timothy J. Heaphy says Holder is responsible for making the call on
death penalty cases.
Capital punishment prevents things like this: Murderer
finishes 30-year term, kills mother after welcome home party, police say. A 45-year-old man who on
Friday [10/10/2014] finished serving 30 years in prison is charged with killing his mother two days after being
released, authorities said. Steven Pratt was arrested Sunday morning, less than 48 hours after he was
freed from Bayside State Prison for killing his neighbor in 1984.
General Eric Holder orders no death penalty for three members of Brooklyn drug crew. Outgoing U.S. Attorney
General Eric Holder has ordered federal prosecutors not to seek the death penalty against three members of a Brooklyn drug
crew charged with a killing in which the victim was tortured, the [New York] Daily News has learned The decision was
disclosed Thursday [9/25/2014] in a one-sentence letter to Brooklyn Federal Judge Frederic Block several hours after Holder
announced he was resigning after nearly six years as the nation's top law enforcement official.
Used 15 Doses Of Lethal Drugs To Execute Inmate. The Arizona Department of Corrections
and the Arizona attorney general have said that Wood's execution was not botched and that he was
sedated after three minutes — claims that were reiterated Friday [8/1/2014]. A
medical examiner also told the department that the IVs were "perfectly placed" in Wood's arm.
the hangman botches the job. What makes the Arizona execution particularly horrific is
that it was the third such cruel and unusual botch job this year. Ohio put Dennis McGuire to death
in January with a cocktail of new and untested drugs that, if not mixed properly, cause unimaginable
pain. McGuire screamed that he felt as if his body was on fire, and death did not follow his
gasping and writhing on a gurney for 25 minutes.
myth of botched executions. On Wednesday [7/23/2014], the State of Arizona executed
Joseph Wood. The left wing media immediately jumped on the case, calling it a "botched
execution." To begin with, the execution wasn't botched. He's dead, isn't he?
Wood was convicted of two counts of first degree murder. The murders occurred in 1989. Wood was
convicted and sentenced to death in 1991. He spent 23 years on death row while tax payer
funded lawyers cranked out every strategy possible to stop or delay his execution. The botching
was not the execution. The botching was that it took 23 years.
top court overturns death sentences in 'Wichita Massacre'. The Kansas Supreme Court on
Friday overturned death sentences for two brothers convicted in the 2000 execution-style murder of
four people on a snowy soccer field in Wichita, ruling that the trial judge erred in refusing to
conduct separate penalty phases for the two men.
child killer Eddie Wayne Davis set to be executed. A man convicted of the 1994 rape and killing of
an 11-year-old Lakeland girl is set to be executed Thursday [7/10/2014] with the victim's grandmother watching
from the witness chamber on behalf of the child and her deceased mother.
Henry scheduled for execution at 6 p.m. Wednesday. Henry was sentenced to death for
murdering his wife in Zephyrhills in 1985. Defense attorney Baya Harrison, who filed the appeal
over the weekend, has argued that Henry, 63, is mentally disabled and should not be put to death
under the constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment. Henry has been on death row for
27 years. He stabbed 28-year-old Patricia Roddy 20 times in 1976. He served just
over seven years before being paroled in January 1983. In December 1985, he stabbed his wife,
Suzanne Henry, to death with a 5-inch paring knife after an argument.
execution is nation's third in 24 hours. In the third execution nationwide in less
than 24 hours, a three-time Florida murderer was put to death by lethal injection Wednesday night [6/18/2014].
The execution of John Ruthell Henry was the state's 13th since April 2013 and the 18th since Gov.
Rick Scott took office in 2011. The trio of executions Tuesday and Wednesday were the first since
the botched lethal injection of an Oklahoma killer in April. Henry, 63, was pronounced dead at
7:43 p.m. after being injected with three drugs at the Florida State Prison in Starke.
An attempt by the New York Times to make the perp look like a victim. On
Death Row With Low I.Q., and New Hope for a Reprieve. For Ted Herring, who has spent
32 years on Florida's death row for murdering a store clerk, signs of intellectual disability arose
early and piled up quickly: He repeated first grade and got D's and F's through fourth grade.
He read like a fourth grader at 14 and did not know that summer followed spring. [...] At 19, in 1981,
Mr. Herring murdered a Daytona Beach 7-Eleven clerk, robbed the store and walked away with $23.84.
But because Mr. Herring's I.Q. scores were 72 and 74, just over the "bright line" cutoff of 70 used
by Florida to determine intellectual aptitude, the Florida Supreme Court returned him to death row.
The Editor says...
Stupidity is not a license to kill.
Oklahoma execution: Did anyone remember Clayton Lockett's victim? One person who will not weigh in on
the merits of Clayton Lockett's execution is Stephanie Neiman. Clayton Lockett tried to rob a house Miss Neiman
was at. She tried to fight him off. He and his accomplices overwhelmed her. They beat her, bound her
with duct tape, taped her mouth shut, shot her, then buried her alive. Many of those outraged at how Mr. Lockett's
execution played out will, hopefully, pause to reflect on exactly why the state chose to execute him.
He deserved it: Friends of victim weigh in on botched execution.
Those who knew the victim of a convicted killer who died in a botched execution this week have spoken out to say he deserved
the painful death — in which he took 47 minutes to die after periods of writhing in pain. They
expressed their lack of remorse as a disturbing video emerged of Clayton Lockett confessing, and calmly described
shooting a teenage girl and watching his partners in crime bury her alive. Lockett was sentenced to death for
the killing of 19-year-old Stephanie Nieman 15 years ago in Oklahoma.
Can Barely Contain Its Glee Over Problems with Oklahoma Execution. Due to European Union's ban
on the export of one of the drugs historically used in US lethal injections, a new lethal combination of drugs
were administered that prolonged the time it took between the onset of prisoner's loss of consciousness and
the time he was finally pronounced dead. Prison officials confirmed the prisoner ultimately died of a
heart attack that occurred nearly 40 minutes after the first sedative was administered. They
claim that at no time after having lost consciousness did the convicted murderer ever regain it.
With repeated and detailed descriptions of the procedure used to execute a man whose crime, watching
his friends bury alive the 19 year old girl he raped and then shot, was mentioned, if at all,
merely as a passing aside.
The Editor says...
Sometimes executions get messy. The guillotine and perhaps the firing squad are probably the only methods of
execution that work every time without complications. Lethal injections depend on the inmate having good veins,
and in the Oklahoma case, the man's veins either collapsed or ruptured, depending on which news report you read,
and the situation got pretty gruesome afterward. But as many have pointed out, the perpetrators of capital
crimes don't go out of their way to make death smooth and seamless for their victims; in fact, it's usually just
This is what capital punishment prevents: Early-Release
Felon Charged with Kidnapping, Rape, Torture. A man on probation as a "non-violent offender" under
California's prison realignment program has been charged with kidnapping, raping, and torturing a 16-year-old girl
in South Los Angeles, and detectives suspect he may be connected to three other recent murders.
Juan Carlos Chavez executed
for 1995 rape, murder of Jimmy Ryce. A man was executed Wednesday night in Florida for raping and killing a 9-year-old boy 18 years ago, a
death that spurred the victim's parents to press nationwide for stronger sexual predator confinement laws and better handling of child abduction cases.
The truth about the long
execution of Mr. McGuire. In January 2014, Mr. McGuire was a 53-year old man on death row. But in February 1989,
he was a young man who murdered Joy Stewart. And who is Mrs. Stewart? She was a 22-year old newlywed pregnant woman who
would have given birth to a child in just two months if Mr. McGuire hadn't raped her in a particularly horrific way, stabbed her, slit
her throat and left her to rot in the woods. Yes, the same Mr. McGuire whose 26 minutes of pain are cause for Ohio to
re-evaluate its values, we're told.
Family of Executed Man Plans to Sue State. The family of a
death row inmate who was executed with a new drug concoction is planning to sue the state of Ohio for "cruel and unusual punishment," arguing that he was used as an
"experiment." The family of Dennis McGuire, 53, watched him die for 26 minutes, during which he was heard having gasping, snorting and making other sounds of
distress. [...] McGuire was executed for the 1989 rape and murder of Joy Stewart, who was eight months pregnant at the time.
The Editor says...
One wonders what sorts of gasping and snorting and other sounds of distress came from the woman he killed.
Just What Constitutes 'Humane'
Execution? Dennis McGuire, convicted in 1989 of raping and murdering a young, pregnant woman, was executed in
Ohio last night. His death took 26 minutes from the time the experimental cocktail of lethal drugs was injected
until he was pronounced dead. The two drugs used — midazolam, a sedative; and hydromorphone, a morphine
derivative — were employed because penobarbital, [sic] the drug formerly used by the state, was unavailable due to a
manufacturer's refusal to sell the drug for the purposes of execution.
The Editor says...
It is inaccurate to say "his death took 26 minutes," if the clock started when his first I.V. sedative was injected.
If swift death is the goal, bring back the guillotine.
executes Askari Abdullah Muhammad (Thomas Knight) for killing guard, couple. A Florida inmate was executed Tuesday 1/7/2014] for
fatally stabbing a prison guard with a sharpened spoon while on death row for abducting and killing a Miami couple. Askari Abdullah
Muhammad, previously known as Thomas Knight, was pronounced dead at 6:45 p.m. Tuesday [1/7/2014] after a lethal injection at Florida
State Prison, the governor's office said. The execution took place in the same prison where Muhammad killed corrections officer
Richard Burke in 1980.
The Editor says...
This man was executed 39 years after committing murder, and because he wasn't executed immediately, a death row guard lost his life, too.
Missouri executes serial
killer Franklin. Joseph Paul Franklin, a white supremacist who targeted blacks and Jews in a cross-country killing spree from 1977 to
1980, was put to death Wednesday [11/20/2013] in Missouri, the state's first execution in nearly three years.
The Editor says...
The deterrent effect of the death penalty is diminished considerably if it takes the state 40 years to follow through.
The Editor says...
It could be that Mr. Happ wanted to acknowledge his guilt at long last, but maybe he was just trying to buy some time.
Woman on Death Row Could
be Freed to Await Retrial. An Arizona woman who has spent more than two decades on death row after being convicted of having her 4-year-old son killed
for an insurance payout is expected to be released on Friday [9/6/2013] while she awaits a retrial of the case that made her one of the state's most reviled inmates.
The Editor says...
It will be interesting to see how long it takes to carry out the death sentence, especially with the defendant offering no resistance.
woman sentenced to death at 16 to leave prison. Paula Cooper was 16 when she was sentenced to death for killing an elderly Bible
study teacher. That made the Gary, Ind., teen the youngest person ever in the state to face the death penalty. At the time in
1986, she also was the youngest Death Row inmate in the United States. [...] The Indiana Supreme Court commuted the death sentence in 1989
and sent her to prison for 60 years.
The Editor says...
The writer in USA Today reports the story with obvious sympathy for the perpetrator, as if everybody stabs a little old lady
to death once in a while.
Two killers: Which received
justice? They say that justice delayed is justice denied. If that is the case, then surely the families of Harvey Mad Man and
Thomas Running Rabbit can rightly complain that there is no justice in Montana. The two men were murdered execution style in 1982 by Ronald
Allen Smith, who during his trial confessed to the murder and said he had wanted to know what it felt like to kill someone. He also rejected
a plea bargain for life in prison and insisted on the death penalty. He got his wish, and then, three weeks later, got cold feet, deciding
apparently that he did not want to know "what it felt like" to die. So now for 30 years, justice has been in abeyance.
death row inmate kills mom. A California man once sentenced to death for killing two people in the 1960s was under
arrest Thursday [1/10/2013] after police said he led officers to the body of his 89-year-old mother.
Where are the fathers? [Scroll down] [Andrea] Yates, it would emerge
in her trial, had a history of mental illness and suicide attempts, as well as bouts of postpartum depression. Because of this, her 2002 conviction for capital
murder was overturned in 2006, after a jury found her not guilty by reason of insanity. Shockingly, she is now asking to be let out of the hospital for weekly
visits to church. Not only might she be granted this wish, but authorities are not ruling out the possibility that she will be rehabilitated enough to re-enter
society altogether. Her actions were — for lack of a more appropriate word — satanic. As far as I'm concerned, she deserved the
death penalty, or at least life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
Obese killer spared by governor.
The obese killer on Ohio death row successfully petitioned for clemency due to his size, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported Monday [12/17/2012].
Ronald Post, who was condemned to execution for the 1983 murder of a motel clerk, and his attorneys had argued that a confession was falsely exaggerated
and that he could not be humanely put to death due to his size.
Adam Lanza Would Not Have Received
the Death Penalty in Connecticut. Though Adam Lanza may have committed one of the most heinous crimes in history, had he survived his rampage and been
convicted in court, he would not have been sentenced to death. In April of 2012, Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) and the Democrat-led Connecticut legislature repealed
the death penalty on a party-line vote.
inmate Ronald Post says he's too fat for execution. A condemned US inmate who weighs at least 218 kg wants his upcoming
execution delayed, saying his weight could lead to a "torturous and lingering death." Ronald Post, who shot and killed a hotel
clerk in northern Ohio almost 30 years ago, said his weight, vein access, scar tissue and other medical problems raise the
likelihood his executioners would encounter severe problems. He's also so big that the execution gurney might not hold him,
lawyers for Post said in court papers filed on Friday [9/14/2012].
The Editor says...
First of all, I suspect this man's victim experienced a "torturous and lingering death" and now it's payback time. Second, the inmate's
excessive weight is entirely his own fault. I believe there have been several others who have tried to claim they were too fat to execute.
Donald Snyder, Richard Cooey, and Jeffrey Lundgren come to mind immediately — or at least they come to Google's mind.
Racial bias saves death row man. A
convicted killer has been ordered off death row in the US state of North Carolina after a judge ruled his trial had been
tainted by racial bias. Marcus Robinson's case was the first to be heard under North Carolina's controversial
Racial Justice Act (RJA).
Florida killer executed for teen girl's 1983
killing. A Florida inmate was put to death Thursday [4/12/2012], nearly three decades after the murder of 17-year-old Lynn
Elliott, whose failed escape attempt ended a string of rapes and slayings that shook the quiet coastal town of Vero Beach.
agrees to free three 'lifers'. A deadly armed robber once facing the death penalty, a Dorchester appliance store
owner's killer and a man who did nothing to stop a friend from pumping a Springfield resident full of bullets are the first
three "lifers" to be set free since the state Parole Board was revamped by Gov. Deval Patrick following the Dec. 26,
2010, murder of Woburn Police Officer John "Jack" Maguire by a career felon paroled despite serving three life sentences.
set to die for 1980 slaying of St. Pete woman. A twice-convicted murderer who has lived on Florida's
death row for more than three decades is scheduled to die by lethal injection this week for killing a St. Petersburg
mother — but like many executions, why he is being killed now and why it didn't happen years ago are both
something of a mystery.
Former Death Row inmate Kenneth Richey back in Putnam County jail.
He got off Ohio's Death Row but Scotsman Kenneth Richey can't stay out of trouble and is back where he began — in
Putnam County Jail. Richey, 47, was to be arraigned today in Putnam County Common Pleas Court for allegedly
threatening Judge Randall Basinger, who was an assistant prosecutor in 1987 when he was convicted of murder in
charges he threatened a local judge.
terrifying case for the death penalty. The criminal justice system often is not perfect, but justice
cries out for Oba Chandler to take his last breath Nov. 15 for the horrific murders of an Ohio woman and
her two teenage daughters on Tampa Bay 22 years ago.
The Humberto Leal Execution Intervention.
The state of Texas is scheduled to execute Humberto Leal Garcia tonight. He was convicted in 1994 of
rape and murder, and spent the ensuing 16 years on Death Row. The Obama Administration, including
both the State Department and the President himself, have intervened to demand a reprieve. So has the
Mexican government, the United Nations, and various diplomatic figures, including former President George W.
Bush. There are two phrases you will never read in any mainstream media account of the Leal affair.
One of them is "Adria Sauceda." That's the name of Leal's victim.
European Union gives millions to anti-death penalty groups in America.
Why on earth are British taxpayers being forced to fund European Union lobbying for policy campaigns in the United
States? Furthermore, why is the EU directly interfering in domestic political debates in America, and so far
without Congressional oversight? As the research detailed [in this article] demonstrates, the EU's European
Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) is spending millions of Euros on US-based campaigns against the
death penalty. An extraordinary development.
Death row inmate, 94, dies.
The oldest death row inmate in the US has died of natural causes at the age of 94. An Arizona Department of
Corrections spokesperson says Viva Leroy Nash died late Friday [2/12/2010] at the state's prison complex in Florence.
out as Connecticut family's killer gets death penalty. It's trash removal on a global scale,
jurors said yesterday [11/8/2010] of their vote to put home-invasion monster Steven Hayes to death. "The earth will
be a better place if Hayes is removed from it," said juror Herbert Gram, of Madison, Conn., speaking of the
murderer of a Connecticut nurse and her two daughters.
Judicial Imperialism. While removing three state supreme-court justices at one time in Iowa is
news today, the very same thing happened in California back in the 1970s. Every single death penalty
imposed by a trial court in California was overturned by the state supreme court, with Chief Justice Rose
Bird voting 64 times in a row that there was something wrong with the way each trial had been conducted.
That was world-class chutzpah.
Death Penalty. Three years ago, two career criminals, Steven Hayes and Joshua Komiserjevsky,
broke into the Connecticut home of Dr. William Petit where, over a span of hours, they pummeled him with
baseball bats, reducing him to a bloody pulp. Once the man of the house was out of commission, they
proceeded to subject his wife, Jennifer Hawke-Petit, and two daughters, Hayley, 17, and Michaela, 11, to
unspeakable torture and, eventually, death.
Left Him Too Brain Damaged To Be Put To Death. The Georgia Supreme Court unanimously rejected the
last minute argument that Brandon Joseph Rhode's recent suicide attempt left him too brain damaged to justify
his execution, which is scheduled for tonight [9/27/2010].
US executes suicidal inmate.
A US man whose attempted suicide last week gained him a brief reprieve was executed on Monday [9/27/2010] by
the state of Georgia for a triple murder in 1998, officials said.
Ohio man executed for fire
deaths of 5 children. An Ohio man said he was "heartily sorry" before he was executed
Tuesday [7/13/2010] for the murders of five children in a 1992 Cincinnati apartment fire he set in an
attempt to destroy evidence of a burglary.
Execution of Texan on death row
halted. Just hours away from lethal injection, Jonathan Marcus Green received a stay from the
Texas Court of Criminal Appeals Wednesday [6/30/2010] so that it can further consider the question of his
competence to be executed. The state's highest court for criminal matters stopped the execution
following a telephone conference about four hours before Green was to enter the execution chamber. It
then issued orders suggesting it was uncertain over the review of his mental competency.
penalty overturned in 2003 Staten Island cop killings. A vicious cop-killer sentenced to die
for murdering two undercover NYPD detectives will get a second chance to plead for his life. A federal
appeals court today [6/30/2010] narrowly tossed out the capital punishment for Ronell Wilson in the
execution-style slayings of Rodney Andrews and James Nemorin.
executed for 1978 slaying of police officer. Declining to make a final statement, David Lee Powell
was executed Tuesday [6/15/2010] for killing an Austin police officer 32 years ago as seven members of
his victim's family watched silently from a nearby window.
The Editor says...
The article above has a number of wonderful things to say about the killer, and almost nothing
about the police officer he killed.
The Slow Death of the Death
Penalty? Ronnie Lee Gardner deserves to die: So say the people of Utah, where he killed
a bartender in cold blood, then murdered an attorney during an escape attempt. Gaile Owens also faces
death, in Tennessee on September 28, for hiring someone to kill her husband in 1985. Just after
midnight this Friday, barring a last-minute stay, Gardner will become the 28th person put to death in the
United States this year.
man convicted of killing 2 people executed. A Georgia man convicted of the 1986 shooting deaths
of his ex-girlfriend and her 11-year-old niece was executed Wednesday [6/9/2010] by lethal injection after
sitting on death row for more than two decades.
execution set for tonight in wildlife officer's slaying. Peggy Park was 26, just three years out of
college on Dec. 13, 1984, when she decided to question two teenage boys she saw in a van after dark on a back
road in what is now Brooker Creek Preserve. Inside was junior high dropout Martin Edward Grossman, 19, and
his 17-year-old companion, Thayne Nathan Taylor. They had a stolen gun. Grossman was on probation. He'd
already been to prison for grand theft and breaking-and-entering and didn't want to go back.
Supreme Court To Face Mecca. When
six Germans and two Americans were suspected of plotting an attack on U.S. munitions plants during World War II,
FDR immediately ordered them arrested and tried in a secret military tribunal held behind closed doors at the
Department of Justice. Within weeks, all were found guilty. Six of the eight, including one U.S.
citizen, were given the electric chair. One German was sentenced to life in prison and the other American
citizen — who had turned himself in and revealed the plot to the FBI — got 30 years.
The Supreme Court upheld the secret trial, but didn't get around to producing an opinion until after
Old Sparky had rendered its own verdict.
A Conservative Manifesto:
[Scroll down] The news is replete with stories of protesters crowding together outside the gate of a
prison holding candlelight vigils on the eve of the execution of a convicted murderer. There is no
consideration with regard to how vile the committed crime may have been. These half-watt intellects are
filled with compassion for their perceived victim of the state. Bear in mind this group has nothing to
say about the thousands executed by Islamic states.
Silliest excuse yet: Death row foes now
fight the cost of executions. Nearly 3½ years into a court-ordered suspension of
executions, opponents have embraced a new argument: that Californians can't afford to carry out
the death penalty in a constitutional manner. They contend that by commuting all 682 death row
inmates' sentences to life without the possibility of parole, the state could save up to $1 billion
over the next five years — a view expected to be offered, and challenged, during a public hearing
today [6/30/2009] in Sacramento on proposed changes to the lethal injection procedures.
The Editor says...
Executions are not that costly. What really costs the state a lot of money is the years of delays,
appeals and legal wrangling over every imaginable technicality. The state of California is
feeding and housing 682 people who should already be dead.
killer executed: Last words are Islamic creed. [Vernon] Smith was convicted of fatally
shooting Sohail Darwish, a 28-year-old immigrant from Saudi Arabia who owned a convenience store in Toledo
that Smith and two accomplices robbed. Even though Darwish complied with the men's orders to hand over
money from the cash register and his wallet, Smith shot him in the chest.
Ohio executes hitchhiker who shot
3 drivers in '83. Ohio executed a hitchhiker Thursday [5/13/2010] who admitted to killing one
motorist who gave him a ride and shooting two others during a three-week string of shootings that terrorized
the Cincinnati area in 1983.
Without Parole, Life After Death. [Scroll down slowly] If you follow these issues, you know that the
most unrepentant sociopaths will exploit any opening. Think Kevin Cooper, who killed chiropractors Doug and Peggy
Ryen, their 10-year-old daughter and an 11-year-old houseguest in 1983 after he escaped from the California Institution
for Men at Chino, where he was serving time under a phony name for burglary. DNA evidence has proved Cooper's
guilt — yet from Death Row, he still finds lawyers who will ignore the evidence, change Cooper's story and assert
that he is not guilty.
Allen Davis: Safe on Death Row. When a jury found Richard Allen Davis guilty of the murder
of Petaluma's 12-year-old Polly Klaas in 1996, Davis puckered his lips and extended a middle finger to TV
cameras. Later, Davis was sentenced to death, and outraged California voters passed a three-strikes
sentencing law. From death row now, Davis still is puckering up and extending his finger at the
public — and the public is paying for it.
Strong push to ban death penalty
falls in Montana. A state House committee vote likely has ended a strong push this year to
ban capital punishment in Montana. The ban had passed the GOP-controlled Montana Senate. But
the House Judiciary Committee's 10-8 vote against a ban Monday [3/30/2009] makes it difficult, but not
impossible, to act on it further.
New Mexico lawmakers vote to repeal death
penalty. New Mexico state lawmakers voted on Friday to repeal the death penalty and replace it with a
sentence of life imprisonment without parole. The Democratic-controlled state Senate voted 24-18 for a
bill to revoke the death penalty, a source at the chief clerk's office said.
New Mexico governor abolishes capital
punishment. Gov. Bill Richardson, who has supported capital punishment, signed legislation to
repeal New Mexico's death penalty, calling it the "most difficult decision in my political life." The
new law replaces lethal injection with a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.
Che Guevara; a Study in Stupidity, Sadism and
Failure. Here's a "guerrilla hero" who in real life never fought in a guerrilla war. When
he finally brushed up against one, he was routed. Here's a cold-blooded murderer who executed thousands
without trial, who claimed that judicial evidence was an "unnecessary bourgeois detail," who stressed that
"revolutionaries must become cold-killing machines motivated by pure hate," who stayed up till dawn for months
at a time signing death warrants for innocent and honorable men, whose office in La Cabana had a window where
he could watch the executions — and today his T-shirts adorn people who oppose capital punishment!
Myths about Capital Punishment: There have been studies validating the efficacy of capital
punishment for more than thirty years, yet, if all you knew was what the mainstream media reported you would
think science had proven otherwise. The good news, though, is that despite the well-funded, anti-capital
punishment misinformation campaign, helped by a liberal media, the public still favors capital punishment.
Majority of Americans favor death
penalty: poll. The majority of Americans support the death penalty but nearly 40 percent
think their moral beliefs would disqualify them from serving on a jury in a capital trial, a poll showed on
Saturday. Conducted for the Death Penalty Information Center, a group that opposes capital punishment, the
poll showed 62 percent of those surveyed support executing convicted murderers.
death penalty's deterrence. Twelve studies authored by professors from a number of
renowned universities suggest that the death penalty saves lives by deterring criminals from
committing more homicides. Perhaps the Supreme Court should review these cases while
considering its de facto moratorium on executions, considering not only the state's role in
punishing criminals but also its role in protecting innocents.
The Peril of
Non-Executions. Opponents of capital punishment have succeeded in keeping the emphasis on the
possibility of executing an innocent person, instead of the lives that have already been taken by
those spared the death penalty.
Holder Rules Out Death Penalty for Illegal Aliens Charged
With Murder. Attorney General Eric Holder has directed prosecutors in a federal conspiracy and
murder trial not to seek the death penalty for three El Salvadoran men who are in the United States illegally.
The three are accused of robbing and shooting Claros Luna on July 29, 2009 in Alexandria, Va., just a few
miles from the Justice Department, as Luna transported a prostitute from Maryland to Virginia.
Cost is killing
the death penalty. After decades of moral arguments reaching biblical proportions, after long,
twisted journeys to the nation's highest court and back, the death penalty may be abandoned by several states
for a reason having nothing to do with right or wrong: Money.
prepares for first execution since 2001. Cal Coburn Brown surprised investigators with his reply
to this routine question at the end of a lengthy police interview: Anything else you want to tell us?
Brown — arrested in Palm Springs, Calif. for an attack on a woman at a hotel — answered
with explicit details about how he had tortured and murdered a 22-year-old woman in the Seattle suburbs just
days earlier. Her body was found in the trunk of her car.
limits capital punishment. Maryland lawmakers struck a heavy blow to Gov. Martin O'Malley's
hopes of repealing the death penalty Tuesday [3/3/2009] by twice amending the bill he favored in such a
way that capital punishment would continue but with a more limited scope.
Feeling Murderers' Pain:
The Supreme Court this week heard arguments that lethal injection is cruel and unusual punishment. Euthanasia
advocates consider it a blessing for the deathly ill. Yet it's cruel for the just plain deadly. Believers
in a "living Constitution" forget that at the time the Bill of Rights — and the Eighth
Amendment — was written, "cruel and unusual punishment" was probably considered by the Founding
Fathers to be things like drawing and quartering, burning at the stake, and crucifixion. Death by
hanging or firing squad was considered quite civilized.
Death row inmate claims allergy to lethal
injection. An Ohio death row inmate is attempting to postpone his imminent appointment with the
lethal injection gurney by claiming a possible allergy to the anaesthetic used by the state to dispatch its
The voice-over announcer says...
Tell your doctor if you experience euphoria, hallucinations, coma, or death, as these may be signs of
serious side effects. Ask your doctor if Pavulon is right for you!
lethal injection amount to human experimentation? Currently 35 of the 36 states that allow
capital punishment carry out the sentence using lethal injection. Typically, each inmate receives a
dose of the anaesthetic sodium thiopental, a shot of potassium chloride to induce cardiac arrest, and
pancuronium bromide, a potent paralytic to cut off breathing. Each dose is supposed to be administered
in large enough quantities to be individually lethal, and inmates ideally should die from 2 to 8 minutes
after the procedure starts.
Lethal injection issue divides Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court appeared divided today over whether the drugs commonly injected to execute prisoners risk
causing excruciating pain in violation of the Constitution. Several justices indicated a willingness to
preserve the three-drug cocktail that is authorized by three dozen states that allow executions.
The Editor says...
Do murderers give any such consideration to the pain inflicted on their victims? Of course not.
Why then are they entitled to such consideration?
death row injections get OK after high court ruling. Many states wasted little time trying to get
executions back on track following a U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the use of a three-drug lethal
cocktail. Almost immediately, Virginia lifted its death penalty moratorium. Mississippi and Oklahoma
said they would seek execution dates for convicted murderers, and other states were ready to follow.
A matter of life and death. I
like what Chief Justice Roberts said in his majority opinion: "Some risk of pain is inherent in any
method of execution — no matter how humane — if only from the prospect of error in
following the required procedure. ... It is clear, then, that the Constitution does not demand the avoidance
of all risk of pain in carrying out executions."
Georgia executes killer; first in U.S. since
lethal injection upheld. Georgia has executed William Earl Lynd, the first inmate put to death since the U.S.
Supreme Court ended a seven-month moratorium with its ruling last month that lethal injection is constitutional. Lynd
was executed at 7:51 p.m. ET for kidnapping and killing Ginger Moore, his live-in girlfriend nearly 20 years
ago. She was 26 years old when Lynd shot her three times in the face and head on Dec. 23, 1988.
executed for murdering woman. A Florida man was executed Wednesday [8/19/2009] for murdering
a 45-year-old mother of two who was raped, tortured, and strangled after a car she was in broke down on a
highway 26 years ago.
Virginia Inmate Forcibly Carried to Death
Chamber. An inmate declared his innocence Thursday after he was forcibly carried into Virginia's death
chamber, where he was executed for gunning down a police officer. Edward Nathaniel Bell, who was convicted of
killing the officer during a foot chase a decade ago, was pronounced dead at 9:11 p.m. Thursday at the Greensville
Correctional Center. When the door between Bell's cell and the death chamber opened, the inmate thrust his hips
backward and wouldn't step toward to the gurney where the lethal injection was administered. Six stocky corrections
officers pulled him through the doorway and lifted him onto the gurney.
Tompkins Executed For Teen's
Murder. It took Wayne Tompkins about five minutes to fatally strangle his girlfriend's 15-year-old daughter.
Twenty five years later, it took nine minutes for the death row inmate to die by lethal injection at the Florida State
Prison in Starke. Family members of the victim, Lisa Lea DeCarr, struggled to reconcile how a man who killed so
brutally could die with such seeming serenity.
Va. House votes to extend
death penalty. The House has passed bills to expand capital punishment to include those who assist in a murder
but don't commit the actual killing and to those who kill an on-duty fire marshal or auxiliary police officer. The
chamber passed the bills on Tuesday [2/10/2009].
Judge orders lethal injection in
yacht-murder case. Convicted murderer Skylar Deleon was sentenced today [4/10/2009] to die by lethal injection
for three slayings, including the murders at sea of a couple forced to sign over ownership of their yacht, then tied to an
anchor and thrown overboard.
convicted in killing 4 people executed. A former Houston security guard was executed Wednesday
evening for gunning down four people, including his ex-girlfriend and her two small
children, during a shooting frenzy more than a dozen years ago.
Convicted murderer-rapist executed in Houston killing.
Houston rapist-murderer Johnny Ray Johnson, condemned for beating and stomping a woman to death when she refused to participate
in sex, died in Texas' death house Thursday with a hymn on his lips. In a rambling final statement, Johnson denounced
the Texas death penalty, calling Livingston's Allan Polunsky Unit, home of the state's death row, "a dungeon."
Cop killer gets 1st
NH death sentence in 49 years. A jury issued New Hampshire's first death sentence in a half
century Thursday to a man who fatally shot a Manchester police officer to avoid arrest
two years ago. Lawyers for Michael Addison had sought a life sentence, arguing that he acted recklessly,
not intentionally, and suffered from an abusive childhood and possible brain damage from his mother's heavy
drinking while she was pregnant.
The Editor says...
Lawyers always come up with a tear-jerker story to try to establish the defendant as the real
victim. Was the jury supposed to let the defendant get away with murder because his mother
drank a lot?
executed who raped mother; killed daughters. A Florida man convicted of shooting two young
sisters in the head after raping and shooting their mother was executed Tuesday after a nearly two-hour
delay while authorities awaited final rulings from the U.S. Supreme Court. Richard "Ric Ric" Henyard,
34, was pronounced dead at 8:16 p.m. He had been condemned for the death of 7-year-old Jamilya
Lewis and her 3-year-old sister, Jasmine.
Turns Aside Pressure on Execution of 5 Mexicans. Despite pleas from the White House and the
State Department, as well as an international court order to review their cases, Texas will execute five
Mexicans on death row, a spokeswoman for the governor said Thursday [7/17/2008]. The first of the
executions — that of José Ernesto Medellín, 33, convicted in the 1993 rape and murder
of two teenage girls here — is scheduled for Aug. 5.
The Editor says...
Notice that the article in the New York Times includes a big picture of the murderer's
grandmother. I guess we're supposed to feel sorry for her, not the people her son murdered.
Medellin executed for rape, murder of
Houston teens. The state of Texas defied an international court and executed Jose Ernesto
Medellin late Tuesday [8/5/2008] after the U.S. Supreme Court denied a stay of execution for the killer
in the 1993 Houston gang rape-murders of two teenage girls.
holds 1st execution since botched method. Florida on Tuesday carried out its first execution
since a botched lethal injection procedure prompted a moratorium and state investigation. Gov. Charlie
Crist's office said Mark Dean Schwab was put to death by lethal injection at 6:15 p.m. Schwab was
convicted of kidnapping, raping and killing 11-year-old boy.
says he's too fat to safely execute. A death row inmate scheduled for execution in October says
he's so fat that Ohio executioners would have trouble finding his veins and that his weight could diminish
the effectiveness of one of the lethal injection drugs.
The Editor says...
Bad news, chump. There are plenty of veins, if you know where to look. A good R.N. can find a
vein on anybody. And what is a "safe" execution, anyway? After what this guy did to his
victims, is he entitled to the "safety" of a painless execution?
executes man who argued he was too fat to die. Ohio executed a 5-foot-7, 267-pound double
murderer Tuesday who argued his obesity made death by lethal injection inhumane. Richard Cooey, 41,
had argued in numerous legal challenges that his weight problem would make it difficult for prison staff to find
suitable veins to deliver the deadly chemicals, a problem that delayed previous executions in the state.
immigrant executed for murder of Arlington store manager. An illegal immigrant from Honduras who
claimed his treaty rights were violated when he was arrested for a robbery-murder in Arlington was executed
Thursday evening. [8/7/2008] The Supreme Court, ruling about 2½ hours before his scheduled
execution time, rejected his appeal without dissent.
in black America is self-inflicted. Nearly all black homicide is intraracial — more
than nine out of 10 black murder victims in the United States are killed by black murderers. So applying
the death penalty in more cases where the victim is black would mean sending more black men to death row.
How ironic! Oklahoma death penalty
foe commits suicide. Defense attorney Lisa McCalmont was well-known nationally as an outspoken
critic of lethal injection and amassed a trove of information about problems with the three-drug cocktail that
is at the very center of a case the U.S. Supreme Court will hear early next year. Colleagues say
McCalmont, 49, was looking forward to the Supreme Court case as a momentous event in her career. But
then, last week, she hanged herself at her home in Norman — a suicide that stunned and baffled some
of those who knew her.
Penalty's Deadly Vacation. The Supreme Court on Tuesday effectively halted U.S. executions via lethal
injection until it can rule on a challenge to the constitutionality of a particular execution "cocktail."
This is just the latest example of the whittling away of the death penalty — the courts have already
cut executions by over a third since 1999. But this latest suspension of executions is likely to
demonstrate yet again that the death penalty deters crime.
A judge drags his feet to avoid enforcing the death penalty. Federal
judge in Ohio stripped of five death penalty cases. A chief federal judge took away five death
penalty cases from a colleague criticized by some prosecutors for taking as many as eight years to issue
appeals rulings. U.S. District Judge Walter Rice is based in Dayton and was appointed by
President Carter in 1980.
Judicial temperament? A
poster of Che Guevara hangs on the wall of a judge who found Ohio's death penalty law constitutionally lacking. But
his idol Che was not very respectful of the niceties of justice, and loved to watch firing squads at work.
Court gives nod to lethal
injection. Florida's Supreme Court ruled yesterday [11/02/2007] that the state's lethal injection
procedures are not cruel and unusual, which could clear the way for the first execution in the US since
September. Lethal injection procedures are under review by the US Supreme Court. The nation's
highest court has allowed only one execution since it agreed in September to hear a case from Kentucky that
raises a similar challenge.
Man gets life in
rape, death of 17-month-old. A three-judge panel decided against the death penalty for a man
convicted of smothering and killing a 17-month-old boy as he raped the child. The judges deliberated for
more than 3 hours and were split 2-1 in their decision to sentence John White, 28, to life in prison without
the possibility of parole.
The Editor says...
I guess the judges are saving the death penalty for someone who has committed a really serious crime.
gets life, plus 301 years. A state prison inmate who shot a correctional officer in the head
while the officer pleaded for his life was sentenced to life without parole yesterday, to the displeasure of
the victim's family and co-workers who had hoped for a death sentence. "You are an evil man," Judge
Joseph P. Manck told defendant Brandon T. Morris, 22. But the judge said factors, including
Morris' emotional immaturity and his history of "staggering" childhood abuse, outweighed the state's arguments
[Once again I ask, for whom are the judges reserving the death penalty?]
Tests Limits Of Death Penalty. Ever since the Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty more
than 30 years ago, justices have been finding ways to limit it. In the intervening years, they have
employed their interpretations of society's "evolving standards of decency" to remove juvenile and mentally
retarded killers from death row.
The Editor says...
Those "evolving standards of decency" are exactly what's wrong with this country. No
civilization can last very long without absolute standards of right and wrong.
to argue for right to execute child rapists at Supreme Court. The case before the court, Kennedy
vs. Louisiana, concerns a Louisiana law and the case of a Jefferson Parrish, La., man convicted of raping his
8-year-old stepdaughter. But striking down that law could call into question Texas' 2007 "Jessica's
Law," which allows the execution of certain repeat child sex offenders. The Supreme Court ruled
30 years ago that death was an excessive penalty for the aggravated rape of a 16 year-old girl.
Right to Kill the Rapist: Our Founding Fathers would never have imagined the constitutionality of executing
rapists to be a serious question. Indeed my own state, North Carolina, considered rape — along with murder,
burglary, and arson — to be punishable by death for the better part of the 20th Century. None of this would
be controversial until some time after the [Supreme] Court — led by Chief Justice Earl Warren — announced
that it had somehow inherited a new standard for declaring statutes in violation of the Eighth Amendment's
ban on Cruel and Unusual Punishment.
court: Don't execute child rapists. The Supreme Court on Wednesday outlawed executions of
people convicted of raping a child. In a 5-4 vote, the court said the Louisiana law allowing the death
penalty to be imposed for raping a child violates the Constitution's ban on cruel and unusual punishment.
Court Rejects Death Penalty for Child Rape. The death penalty is unconstitutional as a punishment
for the rape of a child, a sharply divided Supreme Court ruled Wednesday [6/25/2008]. The 5-to-4 decision
overturned death penalty laws in Louisiana and five other states. The only two men in the country who
have been sentenced to death for the crime of child rape, both in Louisiana, will receive new sentences of
life without parole.
Texas and the
Death Penalty: Forty states have the death penalty on the books, but only 34 have carried out
executions since the Supreme Court permitted states to resume capital punishment in 1976. None come
close to Texas, which has carried out 405 executions over three decades. Virginia, with 98 executions,
is a distant second. What accounts for this Lone Star peculiarity, that some find horrifying?
Supreme Court rules electrocution unconstitutional. The Nebraska Supreme Court
ruled Friday [2/8/2008] that electrocution is cruel and unusual punishment, outlawing the
electric chair in the only U.S. state that still used it as its sole means of execution. In
the landmark ruling, the court said the state Legislature may vote to have a death penalty,
just not one that offends rights under the state constitution.
Faces Off With Texas Over Execution. The president wants to enforce a decision by the International
Court of Justice that found the convictions of Medellin and 50 other Mexican-born prisoners violated their rights
to legal help as outlined in the 1963 Vienna Convention. That is the same court President Bush has since
said he plans to ignore if it makes similar decisions affecting state criminal laws.
Does Foreign Law Govern
US Courts? First, the US has deliberately not approved the treaty that would give the
International Court of Justice any jurisdiction over American courts and American law. Second, any
defendant can waive any rights that he has, by not raising them, and Medellin did not raise any objection
based on the Mexican consulate not being notified until years after his original conviction.
Update: Supreme Court backs Texas in dispute with
Bush. Texas can ignore President Bush and an international court in refusing to reopen the case
of a Mexican on death row for rape and murder, the Supreme Court said Tuesday [3/25/2008]. The court
said Bush exceeded his authority when he tried to intervene on behalf of Jose Ernesto Medellin, facing the
death penalty for killing two teenagers nearly 15 years ago.
Canadian viewpoint: Bring back the
death penalty. For the record, I support capital punishment. Society has the right to
permanently remove criminals for grievous offenses. The public is clearly on side as polls over recent
decades reveal large numbers of Canadians support capital punishment. The death penalty is actually one
of the most humane ways of dealing with the worst criminals. Their quick death does not provide true
justice for what many have done.
Studies say death penalty
deters crime. Anti-death penalty forces have gained momentum in the past few years, with a
moratorium in Illinois, court disputes over lethal injection in more than a half-dozen states and progress
toward outright abolishment in New Jersey. What gets little notice, however, is a series of academic
studies over the last half-dozen years that claim to settle a once hotly debated argument — whether
the death penalty acts as a deterrent to murder. The analyses say yes.
Texas Governor Goes
Wobbly. Texas Governor Rick Perry commuted the sentence of a worthless hoodlum that had
already lived for eleven years too long as a guest of the state after being involved in a wild rampage that
took the life of a young man in 1996. Kenneth Foster was part of a gun-toting quartet of violent street
thugs who had spent the night robbing and pistol-whipping everyone they could find as they terrorized the
streets of San Antonio more than a decade ago.
Supreme Court blocks Mississippi execution.
The Supreme Court halted an execution in Mississippi on Tuesday [10/30/2007], less than an hour before a convicted
killer was scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection. The last-minute reprieve for Earl Wesley
Berry is the third granted by the justices since they agreed late last month to decide a challenge to
Kentucky's lethal injection procedures.
Death penalty advocate studies Holton execution.
A documentary regarding the execution of convicted murderer Daryl Holton is being filmed in Shelbyville this week
by a New York School of Law professor who is a death penalty advocate. "The thing about the Holton case is
that most Americans worry about the death penalty is that an innocent person might be executed," writer-director
Ted Schillinger said between shots at the Shelbyville Times-Gazette newsroom on Monday. "In the Holton
case, the offender is absolutely guilty of a truly heinous crime."
Child Killer Holton Executed. A man convicted of murdering four children with an assault rifle was
executed Wednesday, becoming the first Tennessee inmate put to death by electrocution since 1960. Daryl
Holton, 45, had confessed to shooting his three young sons and their half-sister in 1997 in the town of
Shelbyville, about 50 miles south of Nashville.
Capital punishment on decline in
county. On Tuesday night Harris County hit the century mark in executions, which places it
ahead of any other state — not county, but state — in the nation. Virginia is close
with 98, but the gap will only widen. Of the 380 Texas inmates awaiting execution,
Harris County can claim almost a third of them.
Executions down in U.S. but not in
Texas. The convicted killer of a 3-year-old boy is set to die this week, the first of five lethal
injections scheduled this month as Texas bucks a national trend and bolsters its standing as the most active in
carrying out capital punishment.
Lobbying intense on death penalty.
The Council of State, a panel of top elected leaders that will plunge into the death-penalty debate today
[2/6/2007], has been inundated with e-mail messages, letters and phone calls from people who want it to
ask the legislature to decide what role doctors should play in executions.
On Penalty Of Death: Will the execution of Saddam
Hussein have any impact on the fate of convicted cop killer Ronell Wilson? Jurors who on December 20
convicted Wilson of the deaths of undercover detectives Rodney Andrews and James Nemorin will be weighing the
death penalty as an option when the penalty phase of the trial begins January 10.
blues: Opponents of the death penalty have been rummaging through their bag of tricks and
come up with the theory that lethal injection amounts to "cruel" punishment.
lifts stay on Missouri executions. A federal appeals court lifted a more than
year-old stay on executions in Missouri on Friday, refusing to block capital punishment while
a death-row inmate asks the U.S. Supreme Court to declare the state's form of lethal injection
to be an unconstitutionally cruel punishment.
Tennessee cop killer's execution back
on — for now. Lawyers for convicted cop killer Philip Workman and Tennessee
prosecutors were locked in a federal court battle Monday [5/7/2007] over Workman's execution, scheduled
for early Wednesday [5/9/2007]. … Workman, in an interview with CNN last month, said he feared what lethal
injection might do. "It almost makes me want to choose the electric chair," Workman said.
[You should have thought of that before pulling the trigger, Mr. Workman.]
penalty decision a bad first step. The latest federal judge to rule against the constitutionality
of a state's death penalty is U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel, who issued a ruling Friday [12/15/2006] that
found California's lethal injection protocol to be "intolerable under the Constitution." Chalk up the
ruling as a victory for Michael Morales, who was sentenced to death for raping and murdering 17-year-old
Terri Winchell of Lodi, Calif., in 1981.
Unusual Punishment? Before too much blood spills from "bleeding heart liberals," it might be
helpful to look at Mr. Diaz's criminal resume. According to court records, Diaz was convicted of
second-degree murder in his native Puerto Rico. He escaped from prison there and also from Connecticut's
Hartford Correctional Center in 1981. In Hartford, he held one guard at knifepoint while another was
beaten. Diaz was responsible for three other inmates escaping with him.
Assembly panel OKs doctor
ban at executions. An Assembly committee voted yesterday [4/17/2006] to bar physicians from
participating in executions after a frank debate that invoked abortion in a warning that doctors should be
careful when they ask lawmakers to draw their ethical boundaries.
Condemned can claim injection is
too painful. The Supreme Court opened the door today [6/12/2006] to new constitutional challenges
to lethal injection, the method used by most states and the federal government to execute death row inmates.
executions are unconstitutional. First a sedative courses through a condemned inmate's
bloodstream, then a paralyzing agent and finally a heart-stopping drug. To witnesses viewing the
execution at San Quentin State Prison, it's like watching a man take a nap for about 10 minutes.
[In all the history of crime and punishment, the condemned criminal's absolute comfort
has never been a great concern, and certainly was not guaranteed. A prisoner on death row
must eventually pay a price for his or her crime, and when the time comes, it is
not painless. Let us remember the pain inflicted on the victims, to
whom no such courtesy was extended.]
feet of liberal saints. That Sacco and Vanzetti were guilty is no surprise to those
who've looked into the case. But that didn't stop the martyrdom campaign. Their execution
was used to galvanize everyone from establishment liberals to the very, very hard left. Josef
Stalin publicly lamented it. Protests erupted in the capitals of Europe and across the
U.S. A young Felix Frankfurter staked his reputation on their innocence.
Amnesty condemns Saddam trial, death
sentences. Amnesty International has condemned the death sentences handed to Saddam
Hussein and two of his senior allies, describing their trial as a "shabby affair, marred by serious
flaws". The London-based human rights group — which opposes capital punishment — said the trial should
have helped the process of establishing justice and the rule of law in Iraq but was in
fact "deeply flawed and unfair".
[Are they trying to say that Saddam Hussein is without his flaws and is always perfectly fair?]
executions, Thomas says. Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas unveiled sweeping proposals that
he says will speed up death penalty cases, which take years to crawl through the legal system.
way to restore the death penalty. The governor [of Massachusetts] is right
to support capital punishment. He is right as a matter of justice: Juries ought
to have the option of meting out the very worst punishment to the very worst offenders. And
he is right as a matter of democratic governance: Massachusetts voters have long backed the
death penalty — in 1982 they amended their Constitution to say so
explicitly — but their wishes have been thwarted by the state Legislature
and supreme court.
Remorseless killer executed at
Lucasville. Remorseless to the end, Darrell Ferguson was executed today for the
Christmastime murders of three elderly, disabled Dayton residents in 2001. Ferguson, 28,
died by injection at the 10:21 a.m. at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility near Lucasville.
Spewing curses, killer is put to death.
Joseph Nichols, condemned for the murder of a 64-year-old Houston convenience store clerk, died in the state's
death house Wednesday with a curse on his lips. He was the eighth killer executed in Texas this year,
the second this week.
race bias seen in death penalty demand. A study by the Rand Corp. think tank failed to find
racial bias among U.S. federal prosecutors seeking the death penalty in criminal cases. The study by the
Santa Monica, Calif.-based group examined the files of 652 defendants charged with capital offenses between
Jan. 1, 1995 and July 31, 2000. Rand said it was one of the most thorough examinations ever
of federal death penalty prosecutions.
The Pope, Richard Speck
and the death penalty: If Richard Speck isn't a textbook example of why capital punishment is
warranted, he'll do until a better one comes along. Slowly and methodically, he snuffed out the lives of
the young women. He strangled five of his victims and stabbed the other three. He raped one before
Time Magazine's Anti-Death Penalty Cover Boy Proven Guilty
By DNA Test. Way back in 1992 Roger Keith Coleman was Time magazine's cover boy against
the death penalty. Time ran the following over a photo of Coleman in chains: "This Man Might Be
Innocent, This Man Is Due To Die." Fast forward to 2006 and DNA tests have proved Coleman
was in fact rightfully convicted of raping and killing his 19-year-old sister-in-law.
DNA Tests Confirm Guilt of Executed
Man. New DNA tests confirmed the guilt of a man who went to his death in Virginia's
electric chair in 1992 proclaiming his innocence, the governor said Thursday [1/12/2006].
The Editor says...
Almost everyone in prison claims to be innocent. On the other hand, here is a
case where a guy on death row could very well be innocent:
Maybe, or maybe
not. A man's life hangs in the balance. Whose judgment do you trust, twelve duly appointed
jurors or one lone blogger? Normally, I'd say "the jury," but in the case of Cory Maye things may
not be what they seem.
of Execution Denied for Police Officer's Killer. A convicted killer who argued that the state's
use of lethal injection was cruel and unusual punishment was put to death in Starke after the U.S. Supreme
Court denied him a stay. Clarence Hill, 48, was executed for the 1982 murder of a Pensacola police
officer in a savings and loan robbery.
The Editor says...
24 years on death row is at least 23 years too long. In this case, it was half a lifetime.
over honor for cop-killer inmate. Cop-killer Leslie Ann Nelson, 48, a transsexual go-go
dancer whose name was Glenn Nelson before a sex-change operation at age 34, was convicted of killing
Camden County law enforcement officers John McLaughlin and John Norcross during a 1995 standoff in
Haddon Heights. She was removed from death row, but has an upcoming death-penalty trial in
which she wants to represent herself. Juries have twice decided she should die, and twice those
sentences were overturned by the state Supreme Court.
Judge says the 'Railroad Killer' Can Die Next
Week. A judge ruled Wednesday [6/21/2006] that serial killer Angel Maturino Resendiz, who gained
notoriety as the "Railroad Killer" linked to at least 15 murders across the country, is mentally competent to
be executed next week for the 1998 rape-slaying of a Texas doctor.
[Why wait until next week?]
Frail, blind convicted
killer executed in California. Clarence Allen was put to death by lethal injection early
Tuesday [1/17/2006] after failed efforts to convince Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and the US Supreme
Court that he was in such poor health that killing him would be cruel.
[Who were the people putting up such resistance to this execution? Aren't they the
same people who are in favor of assisted suicide for sickly old people?]
Scott Peterson will probably die of
old age. California's chief justice, Ronald George, acknowledged that an appeals process that is
"in many ways dysfunctional" will keep Peterson alive for decades to come. "The leading cause of death on
[California's] death row is old age." But no chief justice should be glad that the judicial system he
presides over cannot do its job.
Scott Peterson transferred to San
Quentin. Since 1978 executions are just the third-leading cause of death for California's Death
Row inmates. The first is natural causes and the second is suicide. The earthquake state has
executed 11 people in the past 27 years — despite having 644 inmates on Death Row.
Editor's note: According to news reports I've
heard, Scott Peterson will be in a cell by himself, will eat meals by himself, and will exercise outside every
other day. He doesn't have to work, his meals, clothing and housing are provided at no cost (to him), and
he isn't bothered by telemarketers. What a great life! This kind of "punishment" is exactly the
reason that the death penalty isn't an effective deterrent. If he had been dragged out of the courtroom
and executed the day he was found guilty, (after a lengthy, fair and well-documented trial) the message to
future murderers would be loud and clear.
Inmate survives first
execution. A double murderer was put to death in Ohio but not until after one of his veins had
collapsed, causing the condemned man to sit up and tell his executioners, "It's not working", officials
The Editor says...
Lethal injection was mandated by many states because it is supposed to be
completely painless. An execution, in my opinion, should be mercifully quick, even
if not pain-free.
Is "putting down" a murderer "cruel and
unusual"? Convicted cop killer Clarence Hill had his day in the U.S. Supreme Court this
week as the Justices heard arguments that executing him by lethal injection would violate
the 8th Amendment's prohibition against inflicting cruel and unusual punishments.
China's hi-tech 'death van': After trials of the mobile
execution service were launched quietly three years ago — then hushed up to prevent an
international row about the abuse of human rights before the Olympics last summer — these
vehicles are now being deployed across China. The number of executions is expected to rise to a
staggering 10,000 people this year (not an impossible figure given that at least 68 crimes —
including tax evasion and fraud — are punishable by death in China).
"If cowardly and dishonorable men sometimes shoot unarmed men with army pistols or guns,
the evil must be prevented by the penitentiary and gallows, and not by a general
deprivation of a constitutional privilege."
This is what "swift and sure" means... Prosecutor says Guilty Saddam would
hang quickly. The Iraqi High Tribunal's chief prosecutor says Saddam Hussein will hang
immediately if he is found guilty on charges relating to deaths of 148 Shiites. … "If the court
passes a death sentence on any of the defendants in the Dujail case, the law is clear, the sentence
must be carried out within 30 days following the appeal," Mr Mussawi said.
uncertain in grenade murders. Relatives of the two servicemen killed in Sergeant Hasan Akbar's
grenade and rifle attack said yesterday [4/29/1005] that he deserved the death sentence given to him by a
military jury. But specialists in military law say it is hardly a certainty the execution will ever
happen. The military has not executed one of its own since 1961, while states have put scores of
civilian killers to their deaths.
Iraq hangs 27 on terrorism
charges. Iraqi authorities hanged 27 convicted "terrorists" today, an interior ministry spokesman
announced. "Twenty-seven terrorists were hanged today in Baghdad. Most of them were Iraqis," said
interior ministry spokesman Abdul Karim Khalaf. He said they were convicted for attacks on Iraqi civilians
and sentenced to death, in an execution order signed by an Iraqi vice president.
The "Let Scott Peterson Live" Campaign at CBS.
As if we needed any more evidence of liberal media bias on the part of CBS, the senior political editor for CBS
News, Dotty Lynch, has written a column arguing that convicted killer Scott Peterson should be allowed to live
the rest of his life at taxpayer expense in a California prison because he may not really be guilty of
murdering his wife and unborn son.
Judge not. Here they
go again. On March 1, the Supreme Court — by its now familiar 5–4 margin —
issued a ruling that bans states from executing anyone who was younger than 18 at the time of his crime.
You may believe that this ruling gives teens a license to kill, or you may consider it to be a sensible
protection for our innocent children. Either opinion is defendable, and immaterial. The important
thing — and the frightening thing — about the ruling is that it continues the court's
march toward a "living Constitution" and away from original intent.
poor perverts. I can nearly, but not quite, understand why some people object to capital
punishment. … What I can't begin to fathom are the people who seem to have the same tender feelings
for sexual predators that the rest of us have for our pets. Unfortunately, these aren't the same
mushy-headed simpletons holding candlelight vigils outside San Quentin. Instead, they're judges
Standards of Decency. William Kristol sarcastically thanks the US Supreme Court for
its recent decision saving the life of Christopher Simmons, the youthful sadist who murdered
Shirley Crook for the fun of it in 1993. In seven paragraphs of well-tempered fury,
Kristol contrasts the judicial sensitivity to "evolving standards of decency" that spared
Simmons from the death penalty because of his age with the absence of any such sensitivity
when it came to Terri Schiavo.
Slams Juvenile Death Penalty Ruling. Justice Antonin Scalia criticized the Supreme Court's recent
decision to strike down the juvenile death penalty, calling it the latest example of politics on the court that
has made judicial nominations an increasingly bitter process.
supremacists and the despotic branch. Justice Antonin Scalia, a dependable
constitutional constructionist, protested on behalf of the dissenters that capital
punishment should, rightly in accordance with constitutional federalism, be determined
by individual states. … "To invoke alien law when it agrees with one's own
thinking, and ignore it otherwise, is not reasoned decision-making, but sophistry."
Facts While Making Law. In our system of limited government, with its separation of
powers, we depend upon our unelected lifetime-tenured judges to restrain themselves from implementing
their own moral, social and political values when they are unsupported by a plain understanding
of the Constitution and at odds with the choices we make through the democratic process.
the Supreme Court's definition of cruelty: In this case, a majority of the court
ruled that the execution of someone who was 17 at the time of the crime violates
the 8th Amendment, which prohibits "cruel and unusual punishments." It reached
this conclusion just 16 years after deciding that the execution of a 17-year-old did not
violate the 8th Amendment. What changed was not the 8th Amendment, which reads
exactly as it did then. What changed, in the court's opinion, were the "evolving
standards of decency that mark the progress of a maturing society."
Constitution: Made in Jamaica? In Roper v. Simmons, the Supreme
Court reached out and gave America a good old-fashioned smack-upside-the-head when it abolished
capital punishment for juvenile offenders. … The Court declared that the death penalty
was now unconstitutional for minors due to a supposed "emerging national consensus" that the
death penalty was wrong. The last time we checked, the Supreme Court was supposed to use
the Constitution as its guide. If anyone's to take notice of an "emerging national
consensus," it's the legislature.
new age Supreme Court. In its 5-4 decision on March 1, the
Court decreed that "Juveniles are less mature than adults and, no matter how heinous their
crimes, they are not among 'the worst offenders' who deserve to die." While I certainly
respect that opinion, I strongly object to the United States Supreme Court presuming to
impose it on our entire society as if it is the final arbiter not just of the law, but
our moral standards.
Court's vexing elitism. In my last column, I discussed the Supreme Court's
abominable decision outlawing the death penalty for murderers under the age of 18. I have
a few more complaints. First, much of the Court's analytical emphasis considers the
plight of the offenders. Conspicuously lost in the equation are concerns for the victims
and society at large, for whom the Court demonstrates a stunning disregard.
The Editor says...
(1) I've never even seen the inside of a law school, but even I can tell you that the Tenth
Amendment says this is an issue which should be decided by each of the 50 states for
themselves, not by the Supreme Court.
(2) In the Jewish culture, a 13-year-old boy has a bar mitzvah ceremony, in which he
declares, "Today, I am a Man," and is then considered an adult.
(3) If you are a drug dealer and a murderer and a recalcitrant felon, you should get the electric chair
if you are at least 13 years of age.
the death penalty: With conservative ideas sinking new roots across
American culture, conservatives have new reason to test their own thinking.
to Execute Inmate in 1981 Slayings. It would be the first execution in California
since January 2002 and only the 11th since the state reinstated the death penalty in 1977. More
than 600 men are on the state's death row. … The last execution in California came on Jan. 29,
2002, when Stephen Wayne Anderson was put to death for shooting an 81-year-old woman in 1980.
innocents die when we don't have capital punishment: Murderers who are
not executed have murdered innocent people — usually fellow prisoners. And the very real
possibility of escape from prison means that murderers threaten far more innocent lives than
capital punishment does.
Vermont Has its First Capital Trial in
50 Years. A man convicted of helping to fatally beat a grandmother as she prayed for her life was
formally sentenced to death Friday [6/16/2006], Vermont's first death sentence in almost half a century.
Executing "children," and other
death-penalty myths: The age issue is a red herring. No state allows the death sentence
for anyone younger than 16, and no one younger than 23 has been executed in modern times. The truth is
that capital punishment in America is the most accurate and carefully administered criminal sanction in the
world, and the public has good reason to support it.
Murdering the bell
curve: After hearing the (overwhelming) evidence against him, a jury sentenced Atkins to
death. Last week, the Supreme Court overturned that sentence. The court ruled that the Constitution
makes Atkins ineligible for the death penalty if he can prove he is "retarded." In other words, Atkins
avoids his capital sentence if he is at least smart enough to know how to fail an IQ test.
Retardation and capital
punishment: The Supreme Court, in its decision, said that persons deemed retarded -- with
an IQ of 70 or less (why not 71?)-- and judged guilty of a capital crime, cannot be
executed. In so ruling, the court majority moved from the intention of the Founders, which was to make
execution more humane, to focusing on the status of the guilty, which appears not to have entered the
Founders' minds while crafting the Eighth Amendment.
Deal keeps Penry imprisoned for life.
The long saga of convicted murderer Johnny Paul Penry, whose case helped push mental retardation into the national
debate over capital punishment, ended Friday [2/15/2008] with a plea agreement to a life sentence. Penry,
one of Texas' best-known death row inmates, agreed to three life sentences and to a stipulation that he was
not mentally retarded, in spite of what his lawyers have asserted for almost three decades.
Texas jurors send killer
to his death 'because the Bible told them to'. A Texas man is due to be executed next month despite
admissions by jurors that they consulted biblical passages advocating death as a punishment to help to decide his
fate. ... During the trial, the jurors were instructed by the judge not to refer to anything that was not presented
as evidence in the courtroom.
The Editor says...
When the judge demands that they not "refer to anything", does that include the jurors' common sense, morality
and individual experiences? If the judge instructed the jurors to find the defendant not guilty, would
they be so obligated? I don't know about you, but I don't think I'd pay much attention to orders of