Judge Mathis on Troy Davis Execution

Judge Mathis weighs in with a powerful condemnation of the Legal System and Georgia’s execution of Troy Davis.

On Lynching and the Execution of Troy Davis

The execution of Troy Davis in Georgia has ignited a firestorm of outrage. Davis’ last words were that he was “innocent”.

Not surprising Cash and Carry Uncle Tommie Clarence led the Supreme Court’s decision not to intervene… Proving once again a black defendant can’t get a fair trial or consideration in the courts, whether it is due to racism, politics – or in the case of Thomas…

A need to re-establish his Lawn Ornament bonafides with the conservative people who own him. I am not arguing that Troy Davis’ execution would have been stopped by the court…

Only that were not the Supreme Court corrupt, at least he would have gotten a fair hearing.

The Execution of Troy Davis Provides Another ‘Haunting Reminder of Once Prevalent Southern Lynchings’

“I am innocent,” said Troy Davis, moments before the the state of Georgia put him to death.

The state-sanctioned slaying, which former President Jammy Carter characterized as “a grave miscarriage of justice,” was completed at 11:08 pm EST.

Before the execution, the man whose case inspired an international outcry against not just the death penalty but a dysfunctional “justice” system told the witnesses at the Georgia Diagnostic Prison facility: “The incident that night was not my fault. I did not have a gun.”

Addressing the family of, Mark MacPhail, the off-duty Savannah police officer he was accused of killing, Davis said he was sorry for their loss. Then, he said: “I did not personally kill your son, father and brother. I am innocent.”

To those who battled to save his life, Davis urged continued investigation, inquiry and struggle for justice. “All I can ask… is that you look deeper into this case so that you really can finally see the truth,” he said moments before the execution.

The killing of Davis took place after US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, a Georgia native, led the High Court in rejecting a plea that the killing be blocked. There were no dissents from the other justices on the current Court.

But it is important to underline the word “current.”

Former Justice John Paul Stevens, who left the High Court last year, has argued in recent statements and interviews that the death penalty is “unconstitutional.”

In particular, he cited evidence confirming that African-Americans who are charged with murder (such as Troy Davis) are dramatically more likely than whites to be executed.

The General Accounting Office has concluded that “in 82 percent of the studies [reviewed], race of the victim was found to influence the likelihood of being charged with capital murder or receiving the death penalty, i.e. those who murdered whites were more likely to be sentenced to death than those who murdered blacks,” while former U.S. Senator Russ Feingold, the long-time chair of the Constutution Subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Commitee, has said that: “We simply cannot say we live in a country that offers equal justice to all Americans when racial disparities plague the system by which our society imposes the ultimate punishment.”

The American Civil Liberties Union notes that  “systemic racial bias in the application of the death penalty exists at both the state and federal level,” and it notes historic patterns of discrimination in particular states such as Georgia—highlighting the classic work of University of Iowa law professor David Baldus, who found that during the 1980s prosecutors in Georgia sought the death penalty for 70 percent of African-American defendants with white victims, but for only 15 percent of white defendants with black victims. (Troy Davis’ case traces back to an incident in 1989.)

The patterns of discrimination, noted Justice Stevens, “provides a haunting reminder of once prevalent Southern lynchings.“

Two Killings… And a Suicide

Busy night on death row…

Georgia Executes Inmate Troy Davis After Supreme Court Denies Appeal

White Supremacist Executed for Texas Dragging

Oh yeah… And that suicide?

Hewlett-Packard investors like possibility of Meg Whitman as CEO

It just doesn’t get any dumber than that.

James Byrd Murderer to be Executed in Texas

Busy few weeks for the “hangman” here in the USA. Lots to cheer about for Rick Perry’s Tea Party crowd, as the executions stack up as they did at the Tea Party “debate”. From Supreme Court intervention stopping an execution  Texas, to the planned execution of Troy Davis in Georgia – it seems killing for vengeance has become big business in a few southern states.

One has to wonder though – just how loudly the same crowd would have cheered to the execution of this miscreant – one of their own fellow “Republicans”…

Man to be executed for dragging death of James Byrd

Lawrence Russell Brewer, 44, is scheduled to die Wednesday by lethal injection in the killing of James Byrd.

Lawrence Russell Brewer - Next on Rick Perry's List?

One of three men convicted for his involvement in the infamous dragging death of a black man 13 years ago is scheduled to be executed Wednesday.

Lawrence Russell Brewer, 44, is scheduled to die by lethal injection in the killing of James Byrd.

Brewer and two other white men chained the 49-year-old black man to the back of a pickup truck and dragged him to death on a country road near Jasper, Texas.

Accomplice John William King also was sentenced to death and is awaiting an appeal. A third man, Shawn Berry, received life in prison.

A prosecutor called Brewer a racist psychopath during his 1999 trial.

During the trial, Brewer took the witness stand and contended that he was a bystander, not a killer.

He tearfully admitted being present when Byrd was dragged to his death but, he said, “I didn’t mean to cause his death. I had no intentions of killing anybody.”

Brewer, a former jailhouse Ku Klux Klan leader, said King initiated the killing by fighting with Byrd. He also said the third defendant, Berry, slashed Byrd’s throat and then chained him to Berry’s pickup. Brewer admitted kicking Byrd and spraying Byrd’s face with black paint.

But he said it was a reflex action taken to try to break up the fight between Byrd and King.

The execution would be the 11th this year in Texas, the most active death-penalty state.

Indeed, I’ll be surprised if we don’t get another of those “5-4″  conservative block Supreme Court decisions to save Brewer at the last minute, with the “usual suspects” suddenly finding the penalty as too extreme. Of course the $500k “donation” to Ginny Thomas’ PAC required to flip conservative votes…

Is probably beyond Brewer’s means.

And then there is this…

Victim’s son objects as Texas sets execution in hate crime death

“You can’t fight murder with murder,” Ross Byrd, 32, told Reuters late Tuesday, the night before Wednesday’s scheduled execution of Lawrence Russell Brewer for one of the most notorious hate crimes in modern times.

“Life in prison would have been fine. I know he can’t hurt my daddy anymore. I wish the state would take in mind that this isn’t what we want.”

Running Out of Rope…

It appears that one of the drugs used in the “cocktail” administered for lethal injection in many states is in short supply. So short in fact, executions may have to be delayed! There seems to be some question as to whether the company which makes the drug is just refusing to produce it, as it’s primary use anymore is lethal injection – or if there is a real shortage of raw materials to make the drug.

If it is the company intentionally not producing the drug… I can certainly understand the ethical and moral issues involved in creating a drug to save lives…

Only to see it’s principal use wind up to be taking lives.

Drug Shortage Puts Executions on Hold

Executions by lethal injection have been put on hold in several states because of a shortage of a key ingredient for the killer shot. Sodium thiopental—generally used to render the condemned unconscious before other drugs are injected, although Ohio and Washington use it to kill—is in short supply across the country, the AP reports. California plans to suspend executions after using the last of its supply for an execution later this week, and Kentucky’s governor has delayed signing death warrants.

The drug’s only US manufacturer, Hospira, blames the shortage on issues with the supply of raw materials and says new batches won’t be ready until January at the earliest. At least one death penalty expert, however, is skeptical of the explanation, noting that the firm objects to its products being used for executions. The company “provides these products because they improve or save lives and markets them solely for use as indicated on the product labeling,” a Hospira exec wrote in a letter to Ohio authorities earlier this year.

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