entering a house through a window got Killeen, Texas, Police Detective Charles Dinwiddie shot in the face and killed last May. It was yet another SWAT raid organized for a purpose other than the reason they were invented. The police had a search warrant looking for narcotics at the home of Marvin Louis Guy, 49. They decided to serve this warrant at 5:30 in the morning and without knocking on his door. He opened fire on them, killing Dinwiddie and injuring three others. …Attempting to serve a search warrant by
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Der Mörder Arturo Diaz wählte sechs Wörter, um sich von der Welt zu verabschieden. „Auf geht’s, Wärter. Ich bin bereit“, sagte er. Dann wurde er mit einer Giftspritze hingerichtet. Es war die 505. Hinrichtung in Texas seit 1976 – in keinem anderen US-Staat werden mehr Todesurteile vollstreckt.
Die texanische Gefängnisverwaltung hat die letzten Worte der Hingerichteten gesammelt. Es sind Botschaften verurteilter Verbrecher – an die Familien der Opfer, die eigenen Angehörigen und die Welt. Viele von ihnen nutzten diese letzten Worte, um ein letztes Mal ihre Unschuld zu beteuern. Andere, um der Familie Mut zuzusprechen oder dem Sportverein Erfolg zu wünschen.
So feuerte Jesse Hernandez – der seinen eigenen Sohn (11 Monate) mit einer Taschenlampe erschlagen hatte – von der Todesliege ein letztes Mal sein liebstes Football-Team an: „Go Cowboys!“ Charlie Brooks jr., der 1982 als erster Texaner nach Wiedereinführung der Todesstrafe hingerichtet wurde, wandte sich an Allah. „Mom, ich liebe Dich“, sagte Michael Perry unter Tränen. Und Alvin Goodwin sagte einfach nur „Auf Wiedersehen“ – auf Irisch.
BILD zeigt in einer großen Grafik alle 505 Todeskandidaten und ihre letzten Worte. http://www.bild.de/bild-plus/news/ausland/todesstrafe/in-texas-die-letzten-worte-der-hingerichteten-32583538,view=conversionToLogin.bild.html
The Horror Every Day: Why Police Brutality Goes Unpunished
An investigation into the Houston police department reveals why officers rarely face the consequences of beatings or shootings.
December 13, 2013 |
The following story first appeared in the Texas Observer.Check out their website for more great stories.
Sebastian Prevot watched helplessly as three police officers advanced on his wife. Prevot was handcuffed and bleeding in the back of a cop car. Half of his left ear dangled where it had been torn from his head. The Houston Police Department doesn’t deny that its officers gave Prevot these injuries during a late-night arrest in January 2012. The only dispute is whether he earned them.
This Report has more than 10 pages, please read them here: http://www.alternet.org/horror-every-day-why-police-brutality-goes-unpunished?ak_proof=1&akid=.224675.FhtIlQ&rd=1&src=newsletter936586&t=3
- The Horror Every Day: Why Police Brutality Goes Unpunished (alternet.org)
- Houston Police Department Claims They Did Not Racially Profile Two Black Men Traveling With White Teen (clutchmagonline.com)
- Group calls for US Justice Department probe of HPD (khou.com)
- Houston police respond to racial profiling accusations with Okla. teen, dancers (kvue.com)
- Houston Police Department responds to accusations of racial profiling (kens5.com)
- How a Texas Cop Who Killed a Double Amputee Holding a Ballpoint Pen Got Away With It (alternet.org)
- Man Sneaks Past Police, Kills Self At Scene Of Brother’s Suicide (houston.cbslocal.com)
Analysis: Wrongful convictions sharpen focus on death penalty
For people wrongly convicted and sent to prison for crimes they did not commit, the opportunities for justice are few and far between.
“There have been no consequences for the prosecutor in my case,” said Anthony Graves, a Texas man who was exonerated three years ago after serving more than a decade on death row for a murder he did not commit.
“He’s never been in front of any board and is free to do whatever he wants, even though the court cited egregious misconduct in his handling of my case,” said Graves, who now advocates for criminal justice reform. Graves spoke Tuesday on a panel of experts at an American Bar Association conference in Atlanta. Earlier in the meeting, former President Jimmy Carter called on the lawyers’ association to campaign to end the death penalty.
Since 1989, 1,241 people have been wrongfully convicted and later cleared of all charges based on evidence that they were innocent, according to the National Registry of Exonerations, a project of the law schools at the University of Michigan and Northwestern University.
In another case of misconduct mentioned by the panel, the prosecutor was disciplined. Texas prosecutor Ken Anderson deliberately withheld evidence proving that a Texas man, Michael Morton, did not murder his wife. He will serve 10 days in jail for contempt of court for withholding evidence and serve 500 hours of community service. He will also give up his law license. Morton served almost 25 years for the murder he did not commit. …
Please, read article here: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/11/13/stateline-death-penalty/3515071/
Texas prosecutor to serve 10 days for innocent man‘s 25-year imprisonment
A former Texas prosecutor who won a conviction that sent an innocent man to prison for nearly 25 years agreed Friday to serve 10 days in jail and complete 500 hours of community service.
Ken Anderson also agreed to be disbarred and was fined $500 as part of a sweeping deal that was expected to end all criminal and civil cases against the embattled ex-district attorney, who presided over a tough-on-crime Texas county for 30 years.
Anderson faced up to 10 years in prison if convicted of tampering with evidence in the 1987 murder trial of Michael Morton, who wrongly spent nearly 25 years in prison…..
- US prosecutor jailed for misconduct (bbc.co.uk)
- Ex-Prosecutor Gets 10 Days in Jail For Sending Innocent Man To Prison for 25 Years (darkgovernment.com)
- Corrupt prosecutor faces 10 days in jail after sending innocent man to prison for 25 years (sott.net)
- Corrupt prosecutor faces 10 days in jail after sending innocent man to prison for 25 years (blacklistednews.com)
- Texas prosecutor will serve 10 days in jail for wrongfully convicting man imprisoned for 25 years (rawstory.com)
- 10 Days in Jail for Ex-Prosecutor Who Sent Innocent Man to Prison for 25 Years (reason.com)
- For the First Time Ever, a Prosecutor Will Go to Jail for Wrongfully Convicting an Innocent Man (dailypaul.com)
Execution drugs mixed by US pharmacies draw death row challenges
Oct. 13, 2013 at 10:55 AM ET
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Several U.S. states are turning to lightly regulated pharmacies for lethal injection drugs, prompting a host of court battles and at least one stay of execution because of concern tainted or impure drugs could inflict cruel and unusual punishment on inmates.
The scramble for alternative supplies comes as major pharmaceutical companies, especially based in Europe, have clamped down on sales of drugs for executions in recent years in order to avoid association with the punishment.
Missouri on Friday abandoned a plan to use the anesthetic propofol to put an inmate to death after the German maker of the drug, Fresenius Kabi, discovered that some had been sold to the state for executions, and suspended shipments to a U.S. distributor in retaliation.
Cut off from traditional sources of drugs, at least five states where the death penalty is legal — South Dakota, Texas, Ohio, Georgia and Colorado — are looking to “compounding” pharmacies, which typically mix drugs for prescriptions and are mostly exempt from federal oversight and face widely varying scrutiny from states.
Tainted drugs from a Massachusetts compounding pharmacy caused an outbreak last year of a rare type of meningitis that killed more than 50 people and sickened more than 700 in 20 states, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The resulting outcry has sparked a drive in Congress for a larger role by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which has warned of “special risks” from compounding pharmacies.
No judge appears to have ruled that an execution was botched from compounded drugs. But death penalty opponents have filed a flurry of lawsuits seeking to halt executions using them.
They say the use of compounded drugs runs the risk of violating the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which forbids states from inflicting “cruel and unusual punishment.”
“You don’t have a high level of assurance that the drug is pure and potent,” said Sarah Sellers, a pharmaceutical consultant who testified twice about the risks of compounders before the Massachusetts Legislature after the meningitis outbreak. “When used in executions, they are a real concern. It could take longer to die, there could be unnecessary suffering.”
Compounders and prison officials reject that view, saying the industry does good work, and that executions happen too fast for tainted drugs to mar the process.
A spokesman for the compounding industry, David Ball, said he was aware of only three pharmacies that had supplied compounded drugs for lethal injections, and that the industry in general was of “high quality.”
“No compounding pharmacy that I know of is actively seeking this business,” he said. “Every pharmacist that I know chose their profession in part out of a desire to help people, and that is what they focus on in their work.”
The results of the court challenges have so far been mixed. In their biggest success, a Georgia judge in July granted a stay of execution for death row inmate Warren Lee Hill. Among the reasons Fulton County Superior Court Judge Gail Tusan cited were questions whether Georgia’s lethal injection drug was “somehow contaminated or improperly compounded.” The state Supreme Court is considering the case.
Other judges have allowed executions to go ahead. In a case brought by three Texas death row inmates, among them Michael Yowell, challenging the use of the drug pentobarbital from a compounder, a judge said he was not persuaded.
“Pentobarbital will kill Yowell in five to eighteen minutes and his consciousness will be diminished almost immediately; therefore, infections like meningitis will not hurt him because they require weeks to incubate,” wrote U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes.
Yowell was executed on Wednesday, the first Texas inmate put to death using the compounded drug.
Compounding pharmacies combine or alter drugs mostly to fill individual prescriptions for patients.
The FDA, which regulates drug manufacturers, does not approve the products of compounding pharmacies, which are licensed through state pharmacy boards.
An FDA study found the potency of compounded drugs can vary widely from that listed on the label, and the agency has cited numerous cases of contamination from such operations.
The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill on September 28 to give the FDA more authority over compounding pharmacies, although the measure is unlikely to become law soon because of the political gridlock in Washington over the budget, national debt and health reform.
In response to concerns about the quality of drugs, Texas had an independent laboratory, Eagle Analytical Services, test the state’s compounded pentobarbital used in executions and it was 98.8 percent pure, court documents in the death row inmates case showed.
“Thousands of individuals use compounded drugs each day,” said Jason Clark, spokesman for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. “The quality and potency of the compounded pentobarbital will not differ from the pentobarbital that is manufactured by a pharmaceutical company.”
LIFTING SECRECY The scramble for new sources of execution drugs has been accompanied by an effort to shield the process from scrutiny, which advocates for death row prisoners find troubling.
“The lack of transparency around the form and source of the drugs puts our clients at an unjustified risk of being executed with drugs that either will not work as planned or will cause excruciating pain and suffering,” said Bryan Stull, a lawyer specializing in capital punishment for the American Civil Liberties Union.
Court challenges and media scrutiny have been more successful in prying information about the compounded drugs from state authorities than in delaying executions.
South Dakota had refused to identify where it got the drugs that it used to execute an inmate last year. A judge on September 30 ordered the state to turn over some information to him, although he said the identity of the compounding pharmacist need not be disclosed publicly.
Earlier this year, Colorado officials turned to compounding pharmacies to seek out sodium thiopental, a common execution drug until major drug companies two years ago refused to supply it. The information was disclosed in a letter sent by the Colorado corrections department to compounding pharmacies that became public in a lawsuit filed in May by the ACLU.
Ohio, which is running out of usable drugs for executions, announced on October 4 that it would allow the purchase of drugs from compounding pharmacies if needed.
Texas, which executes more inmates than any other state, stirred debate over whether it had promised secrecy to a supplier, when it identified the compounder earlier this month.
On October 2, in response to a media public information request, the state criminal justice department said it had purchased pentobarbital for executions from Houston-based Woodlands Compounding Pharmacy.
Two days later, the owner of the pharmacy sent a letter to Texas corrections officials saying he wanted the drugs back because the company had been subjected to public criticism.
“It was my belief that this information would be kept on the ‘down low’ and that it was unlikely that it would be discovered that my pharmacy provided these drugs,” owner Jasper Lovoi said in the letter, which was disclosed in documents as part of a federal lawsuit filed against the state by three death row inmates.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice said it had purchased the drug legally and had no intention of returning it.
Copyright 2013 Thomson Reuters.
- Execution drugs mixed by US pharmacies draw death row challenges (nbcnews.com)
- States Turning To Compounding Pharmacies In Order To Keep Executing People (pascophronesis.wordpress.com)
- Missouri switches to new execution drug (host.madison.com)
- 4 States That Are Trying – and Failing – to Find a More Humane Way to Kill (amnestyusa.org)
- Missouri switches to new execution drug (miamiherald.com)
- DEATH ROW ‘FIRESTORM’ Texas plans execution despite lethal drug fight (foxnews.com)
- Death row inmates now executed with drug cocktail used to euthanize animals. (zedie.wordpress.com)
- The End Of The Death Penalty (nationaljournal.com)
- APNewsBreak: Texas Reveals Execution Drug’s Origin – ABC News (abcnews.go.com)
- Texas executes Lubbock man who killed parents (star-telegram.com)
Texas woman stripped and jailed over unpaid traffic ticket
By Travis Gettys
A north Texas woman said she was ordered to strip and then jailed over an overdue traffic ticket.
Sarah Boaz said she was cited in August for running a stop sign, but she later lost the ticket and failed to pay her fine.
- Gun-owning Texas, Why the HELL Do You Put up with This? “Woman Forced to Strip NAKED and Serve Jail Time for Overdue Ticket”! (dailypaul.com)
- Caught on tape: CA mayor’s racist remarks paint Iraqi immigrants (inprisonedwomen.wordpress.com)
- Police state Woman strip-searched, tossed in jail for overdue traffic ticket… (lunaticoutpost.com)
- Woman Endures Strip Search & Jail Time For Overdue Ticket (homegrownmedia.info)
- Forgot to Pay That Speeding Ticket? “Turn around. Squat and cough. Spread your cheeks.” (alternativenewsalert.com)
- Why This Woman Was Handcuffed, Strip-Searched and Thrown in Jail Might Be Scarier Than Any Story You Hear This Halloween (theblaze.com)
- Woman Stripped and Sexually Assaulted by Cop Over Late Payment of Traffic Ticket (politicalblindspot.com)
- Texas woman handcuffed, forced to strip and jailed over overdue ticket (freakoutnation.com)
- Woman strip-searched, tossed in jail for overdue traffic ticket… (redflagnews.com)
- Forgot to Pay That Speeding Ticket? “Turn around. Squat and cough. Spread your cheeks.” (thedailysheeple.com)
NEW DEATH WARRANT
Governor Scott has signed a Death Warrant for Thomas Knight to be executed on Tuesday, December 3 at 6pm ET. Darius Kimbrough is scheduled to be executed on Nov. 12.
Florida has become “the worst of the worst” of Death Penalty states. Florida is now second only to Texas for the number of executions in 2013. Last year Florida led the nation in new death sentences (22).
Florida has the nation’s second largest Death Row with 405 men and women awaiting the executioner. In tragic irony, Florida leads the nation in exonerations of Death Row inmates (24).
Please TAKE ACTION!!! Contact Governor Rick Scott and ask him to convene the Board of Executive Clemency and commute the death sentences of Darius Kimbrough and Thomas Knight to Life in Prison Without Parole.
Tell Governor Scott to STOP SIGNING DEATH WARRANTS. Your calls and emails are counted.
Gov. Rick Scott – Phone: 850-488-7146
“Only in a society where state governments are intoxicated with the power to kill would you view a sentence of life imprisonment without parole as a lenient sentence.” – Bryan Stevenson, Director of Equal Justice Initiative of Alabama
Please support the Florida statewide coalition effort to end executions. “It is not about what those on Death Row may have done…it is about US and what WE do”.
Please “like” and share the FADP Facebook page.
Shine the light,
Floridians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, fadp.org
P.O. Box 82943
Tampa, FL 33682
In Texas Prisons, 14 People Have Died After Being Forced to Endure 120 Degree Heath
Los Angeles County leads the U.S. in imposing the death penalty
Seven of the top 12 counties for sentencing convicts to die were in California, according to a report showing death rows are primarily filled by just 2% of counties.
|The lethal injection chamber at San Quentin State Prison. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times / September 21, 2010)|
WASHINGTON — Although Texas executes far more prisoners than any other state, Los Angeles and three other Southern California counties lead the nation in sentencing convicts to die, according to a report released Wednesday.
Los Angeles County had 228 inmates on death row at the start of the year, more than double that of second-place Harris County, Texas. Riverside, Orange, San Diego and San Bernardino counties also ranked in the top 12, as did Alameda and Sacramento counties. In all, seven of the top 12 were in California.
“The death penalty is not as American or as widespread as people might assume. It is clustered in a few counties,” said Richard Dieter, the group’s executive director.
Because most criminal cases are prosecuted by county district attorneys, not state officials, Dieter examined the death penalty data by county. Some district attorneys regularly seek death sentences, while others never do, he said.
“Only 2% of the counties in the U.S. have been responsible for the majority of cases leading to executions since 1976. Likewise, only 2% of the counties are responsible for the majority of today’s death row population,” the report says.
There is little correlation between the counties that condemn the most prisoners to die and those that execute the most. That may reflect the differences between the judges who hear inmates’ appeals: In California, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, based in San Francisco, and the often liberal state appellate judges; in Texas, the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, based in New Orleans, and conservative state appellate jurists. Prisoners can challenge their convictions and sentences with multiple appeals through state and federal courts.
Since 1976, Texas has executed 502 convicts, while California has put 13 to death. The report lists 62 counties that are responsible for the most executions, none of which are in California.
Nonetheless, the report demonstrates that California district attorneys have been willing to seek, and California juries have been willing to impose, the death penalty on convicted murderers.
At the start of 2013, the counties that had sent the most inmates to death row across the nation were Los Angeles, 228; Harris (Houston), Texas, 101; Philadelphia, 88; Maricopa, Ariz., 81; Riverside, 76; Clark, Nev., 61; Orange, 61; Duval, Fla., 60; Alameda, 42; San Diego, 40; San Bernardino, 37; and Sacramento, 35.
Nine of the top counties for executions were in Texas or Oklahoma. Harris was first with 115, followed by Dallas County, Texas, with 50. …
- Report: Small Number of U.S. Counties Responsible for Most Death Sentences (usnews.com)
- Study: Two percent of counties produce most executions (trentonian.com)
- Los Angeles County leads the U.S. in imposing the death penalty (latimes.com)
- California Voters’ Shifting Views on the Death Penalty (verdict.justia.com)
- This Texas County Kills More People Than Any Other County In America (businessinsider.com)
- “The 2% Death Penalty: How a Minority of Counties Produce Most Death Cases at Enormous Costs to All” (sentencing.typepad.com)
- 2 Percent Of Counties Perform Majority of U.S. Executions (thinkprogress.org)
- Majority of US executions come from just 2% of counties, report finds (theguardian.com)
- L.A. County leads the U.S. in sentencing convicts to death penalty (sacbee.com)
- Los Angeles County leads the U.S. in imposing the death penalty (kfiam640.com)