[Deathpenalty]death penalty news----TEXAS, FLA., IOWA
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Mon Jan 2 18:51:04 CST 2006
Do Not Execute Marion Butler Dudley!
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Marion Butler Dudley
January 25, 2006 Texas
Marion Butler Dudley, a black man, awaits execution in Texas for the June
20, 1992 shooting deaths of 3 people in a Houston drug house. The victims
include Jose Tovar, a Hispanic man; Jessica Quinones, a Hispanic woman and
daughter-in-law of Tovar; and Frank Farias, another Hispanic man and the
son of a survivor of the shootings. Rachel Tovar and 2 other victims
survived the shootings to identify Dudley as one of the attackers.
After arriving at the home of Rachel and Jose Tovar with the intent to
purchase cocaine, the defendant and 2 others decided to steal drugs and
money from the home. The 3 men tied up the occupants of the house,
demanded money, and then shot the victims.
Marion Dudley was 20 years old at the time of the crime; he had no prior
record. Dudley had not been educated beyond 10th grade. Therefore Dudley
may have been particularly susceptible to the pressure to become involved
in drugs. Furthermore, Dudley is a reasonable candidate for a life
sentence. He is young and so may perhaps be rehabilitated. Alive, in
prison and rehabilitated, Dudley may begin to be an asset in the community
by talking to other at-risk youth. There is no way to know what such a
young man could still do, even while serving a life sentence.
The death penalty is a cruel, inhuman, and unusual punishment. Evidence of
the effectiveness of the death penalty as a means of deterrence is
inconclusive at best. Finally the death penalty is an arbitrary and
racially discriminate punishment that cannot be reversed or amended. The
execution of Dudley will not remedy the tragic loss of life on June 20,
1992. Instead another family will lose a loved one.
Please write Gov. Rick Perry requesting that he stop the execution of
Do Not Execute Jamie Elizalde Jr.!
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Jamie Elizalde Jr.
January 31, 2006
Jamie Elizalde Jr., a Hispanic man, faces execution in Texas on Jan. 31,
2005 for the shooting deaths of Juan Saenz Guajardo and Marcos Sanchez
Vasquez, both Hispanic men. Elizalde, his father Jamie Elizalde Sr.,
Guajardo, and Vasquez reportedly had an argument at a bar in Houston.
Elizalde Sr. convinced Guajardo and Vasquez to come outside where Elizalde
Jr. is said to have shot both men. Elizalde was 22 years old at the time
of the crime.
At trial, the bar's manager testified that he had been standing outside
and saw Elizalde shoot both men. However initially that same witness had
told authorities that he was playing pool inside the bar with another man
and did not go outside until after hearing gun shots. At trial, the
statement that he had been playing pool was corroborated by the man he had
been playing pool with. The bar's manager claims that he changed his
initial statement because the police had pressured and threatened him with
At the sentencing trial, Elizalde's jury was not made fully aware of
sentencing options. They were given the choices of a life sentence or the
death penalty. However, they were not told that if sentenced to life
Elizalde would not receive parole for 40 years. Perhaps if the jury had
known that Elizalde would not be paroled in less than 40 years they would
have chose a life sentence instead of the death penalty.
Since his trial, Elizalde has claimed that he did not have adequate
counsel at trial. However, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals held that
although Elizalde had a right to "competent counsel", the law only
requires "that counsel shall be 'competent' at the time he is appointed."
According to the Texas Court of Criminal appeals, "although Texas does
recognize a limited right to competent counsel, it does not recognize a
right to effective assistance of counsel." Consequently, as long as
Elizalde's lawyer was deemed competent at the time of appointment, Texas
does not require that that lawyer do an effective job of representing
Elizalde. Unfortunately later appeals courts have agreed with the Texas
Court of Criminal Appeals' interpretation of Texas' laws regarding
Elizalde was 22 years old at the time of the crime. The only first-hand
eyewitness was unreliable at best. Additionally there are issues with jury
instruction at sentencing and with Elizalde's trial counsel. Under theses
circumstances, Elizalde should not be executed.
Please write Gov. Rick Perry requesting that Jamie Elizalde's sentence be
(source for both: NCADP)
Do Not Execute Clarence Edward Hill!
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Clarence Edward Hill
January 24, 2006
Clarence Edward Hill, a black man, faces execution in Florida for the
murder of a police officer during a robbery in Pensacola, Florida. Hill
and his accomplice Cliff Jackson stole a car and a gun and then attempted
to rob a savings and loan association. When officers arrived, Jackson ran
out the front door and was apprehended, while Hill ran out the back. Hill
then came to the front of the building to shoot the officers that were
Hill was 23 at the time and there is evidence to suggest that Jackson
masterminded the crime. Regardless of this evidence, Jackson was able to
plea bargain for a life sentence while Hill received a death sentence.
There is also evidence to suggest that Hill was under the influence of
cocaine at the time of the crime.
Furthermore, evidence and testimony show that Hill was known by his
neighbors and family to be a caring and nonviolent person and that he had
a trouble free-history throughout his years in school and in the
neighborhood where he lived. In addition, Hill held a steady job from
ninth grade until he became involved with drugs at age 23. Hill used money
from work to help support his large family of 14 children. He also
contributed time to helping raise his younger siblings. Also, although
Hill remained in school until the 12th grade he never progressed beyond a
fifth-grade reading level.
Clearly Hill is not the worst of the worst and therefore the death penalty
is not appropriate for Clarence Edward Hill.
Death penalty debate expected again in Legislature
Several Iowa lawmakers say they will again push for reinstatement of the
state's death penalty law.
Senator Larry McKibben, a Marshalltown Republican, proposed the death
penalty last session in cases where a child is kidnapped, raped and
With the Senate evenly split at 25 Democrats and 25 Republicans, Democrats
blocked debate on McKibben's proposal.
Democratic leader Mike Gronstal, of Council Bluffs, says he can't be any
clearer on the issue. Gronstal says Democrats will not debate the death
Gronstal says it's a waste of time since Governor Vilsack opposes such a
law and would use his veto power.
(source: Associated Press)
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