[Deathpenalty] death penalty news-----CALIF., ARK., MO.
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Mon Aug 20 21:32:06 CDT 2007
Penalty phase in Hamilton trial postponed
The death penalty trial for a man convicted of murdering Pittsburg police
officer Larry Lasater has been rescheduled to begin on Wednesday in
Superior Court in Martinez.
Superior Court Judge Laurel Brady postponed the trial today after
Alexander Hamilton's attorneys filed an appeal to overturn Brady's order
allowing certain prosecution evidence.
Hamilton's attorneys have asked an appellate court panel in San Francisco
to prohibit the jury from seeing exhibits, including, photographs of
Lasater at various points in his life and an essay he wrote as a
7-year-old in which he said he wanted to be a police officer.
A jury last week convicted Hamilton, 20, of murder, robbery and special
circumstances in the April 23, 2005 killing of Lasater.
The same jury will decide whether to recommend Hamilton for execution or
life in state prison without parole.
The jury also convicted Andrew Moffett in the killing. However, he was 17
at the time, making him ineligible for the death penalty.
(source: San Jose Mercury News)
State Parole Board Rejects Inmate's Clemency Request
A divided Arkansas Board of Parole Monday rejected Terrick Nooner's plea
for clemency, paving the way for the death row inmate to be executed next
The board's non-binding 4-3 recommendation to Governor Beebe was released
Monday morning. The board last week heard testimony from Nooner and from
relatives of Scot Stobaugh, who was killed in 1993 at a Little Rock coin
The 36-year-old Nooner faces a September 18th execution.
Board members John Belken, John Felts, Carolyn Robinson and Lynn Story
voted against Nooner's request for clemency. Board chairman Leroy
Brownlee, Abraham Carpenter and Richard Mays, Jr. voted that Nooner's
request had merit.
Nooner attorney Julie Brain told the Parole Board that a surveillance
video showed the gunman who killed Stobaugh was the same height as
Nooner's convicted accomplice, Robert Rockett.
Brain also said Nooner suffers from mental problems.
At the hearing last week, deputy Attorney General Joseph V. Svoboda said
Nooner faked mental illness and killed Stobaugh for a thrill.
Brownlee recommended that Nooner's sentence be commuted to life without
parole. He commented that there is too much doubt surrounding the case to
carry a capital murder conviction. Mays commented that Nooner appears to
have mental health issues.
(source: The Associated Press)
Federal Appeals Court Upholds Death Sentence Of Meth Dealer Who Murdered
Man In Harrison County In 1995
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit today upheld the
conviction and death sentence of methamphetamine dealer John Middleton,
who murdered a fellow meth dealer in Harrison County, Missouri in 1995.
Middleton also is under 2 additional death sentences for killing 2 other
people in Mercer County who he believed to be informants. The office of
Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon represents the state in defending
Middleton's conviction and sentence.
On June 23, 1995, Middleton picked up Alfred Pinegar at Pinegar's home in
Davis City, Iowa, just north of Harrison County. While with Pinegar,
Middleton purchased shotgun shells and handgun ammunition at a store in
Bethany. The 2 then drove into the countryside with Middletons girlfriend
and then parked. Pinegar tried to flee on foot, but he was shot twice in
the back and then in the face by Middleton with a shotgun.
On June 11, 1995, Middleton murdered 2 other people, Randy Hamilton and
Stacey Hodge, in Mercer County. He received death sentences for all 3
Todays decision by a 3-judge panel of the Eighth Circuit was unanimous.
[source: Missouri Attorney General]
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