Posts Tagged ‘mentally

15
Sep
11

“she’s extremely bright, she’s a great scholar”

24
Aug
11

the onion pretty much sums it up

The Onion

23
Aug
11

‘234 and counting’

Cameron Todd Willingham

Washington Post: … Rick Perry brings to the presidential race a law-and-order credential that none of his competitors can match – even if they wanted to. In his nearly 11 years as chief executive, Perry has overseen more executions than any governor in modern history: 234 and counting….

… He vetoed a bill that would have spared the mentally retarded and sharply criticized a Supreme Court ruling that juveniles were not eligible for death. He has found during his tenure only one inmate on Texas’s crowded death row he thought should receive the lesser sentence of life in prison.

And Perry’s role in the 2004 execution of Cameron Todd Willingham – who supporters said should have been at least temporarily spared when experts warned that faulty forensic science led to his conviction – is still the subject of investigation in Texas.

Perry has been unapologetic. “If you don’t support the death penalty and citizens packing a pistol, don’t come to Texas,” he wrote in his book lauding states’ rights, “Fed Up!”

… death penalty opponents say 12 men on Texas’s death row have been exonerated. Anthony Graves is the latest, spending 18 years in prison before a Texas Monthly investigation showed his innocence.

…. “We’d like to get rid of him,” said Scott Cobb of the Texas Moratorium Network, “but not by giving him to the rest of the country.”

… what is likely to draw the most attention as Perry campaigns is the case of Willingham, who was convicted in 1991 of setting fire to his home and killing his three young daughters. Shortly before his 2004 execution, defense attorneys gave Perry and the pardon board a report from an arson expert saying the forensic evidence used to convict Willingham was severely flawed.

Perry went ahead with the execution, and has refused to release information from his advisers about the evidence. The state forensic science commission began to review the case and the state’s arson unit after investigative journalists cast increasing doubt on Willingham’s guilt. But just before the commission was to hear from an investigator it had hired, Perry dismissed the chairman and replaced three members of the commission.

Full article here

Read more about Cameron Todd Willingham here




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