[Deathpenalty]death penalty news----VER., TEXAS
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Thu Jun 23 23:00:44 CDT 2005
Brother of Unabomber protests death penalty trial
David Kaczynski, the brother of the man known as the Unabomber, has added
his voice to those protesting the federal death penalty trial of Donald
Fell now underway in Burlington.
He says he does not think killing is justified if there are alternative
means to protect society, such as a sentence of life without parole.
Kaczynski is the younger brother of Ted Kaczynski, who killed 3 people and
injured 23 others over a 17-year period. It was David Kaczynski who first
tipped off authorities that his brother may be responsible for the crimes.
But David Kaczynski broke with federal prosecutors after they sought the
death penalty in his brother's case. He says he and his mother met with
the family of one of the victims at the end of his brother's trial.
David Kaczynski is executive director of New Yorkers Against the Death
Penalty and recently helped defeat a proposal to re-institute capital
punishment in that state.
(source: WCAX TV news)
2 SA Men Spared from death row
Nearly 30 men on Texas' death row will no longer face the executioner.
Governor Rick Perry has commuted the sentences of 28 men after the U.S.
Supreme Court ruled death sentences committed by juveniles are
2 San Antonio men are among those who will leave death row.
Randy Arroyo was 17 when he killed an Air Force captain in 1997. Leo
Little received the death sentence for shooting a man in 1998 when he was
The 2 men will now be eligible for parole in 40 years.
(source: WOAI News)
Death row sentences commuted for 2 local men, others
2 local men that had been sentenced to death will get to live, but it will
be a life spent in prison.
Gov. Rick Perry commuted the sentence Wednesday of 28 Texas death row
inmates, including John Curtis Dewberry and Whitney Lee Reeves from
Jefferson County. Instead of the death penalty, the inmates will now
receive life in prison without a possibility of parole.
The governor was following an order from the U.S. Supreme Court that
requires death row inmates who were 17 or younger at the time they
committed their crimes to serve life in prison. The Texas Board of Pardons
and Paroles unanimously recommended the commutations after the court
banned the execution of criminals that were younger than 18 when they
"While these individuals were convicted by juries of brutal murders and
sentenced to die for their heinous crimes, I have no choice but to commute
these sentences to life in prison as a result of the Supreme Court
ruling," Perry said in a press release.
Dewberry, born Jan. 30, 1977, was convicted at age 17 for the Dec. 25,
1994, robbery and murder of Elmer Rode Jr., a former dean at Lamar
University, Beaumont. Rode was tied up with a telephone cord inside his
home and shot in the back of the head and his home was ransacked and
burglarized. Dewberry received the death penalty and his brother Chris
Dewberry received life in prison with a possibility of parole after 40
Reeves, born Aug. 21, 1981, and an accomplice killed a 14-year-old girl
and her 40-year-old father with a 12-gauge shotgun on Aug. 20, 1999.
Reeves was within a few hours of his 18th birthday at the time of the
In March, a closely divided U.S. Supreme Court voted 5-4 to throw out the
death sentences of 72 murderers nationally and 28 in Texas who were under
18 at the time of the crime. Texas was 1 of only 19 states that allowed
the death penalty for juveniles.
Justices said that society draws the line between childhood and adulthood
at age 18, so that should also be the age to be eligible for death.
The ruling continued the court's practice of narrowing the scope of the
death penalty, which justices reinstated in 1976. Execution for those 15
and younger at the time of the crime was outlawed in 1988 and 3 years ago
justices banned the death sentence for the mentally retarded.
The commutation of the death sentences comes on the heels of legislation
passed last week that created a new option of life without possibility of
parole for capital murders.
Senate Bill 60 removed the life with parole option and gave jurors the
option of life in prison or the death penalty.
"This new law will improve our criminal justice system because it gives
jurors a new option to protect the public with the certainty a convicted
killer will never roam our streets again," Perry said.
(source: Port Arthur News)
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