[Deathpenalty] death penalty news-----ILL., OHIO
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Thu Jul 19 20:06:22 CDT 2007
State's attorney might seek death penalty
The Douglas County state's attorney filed additional counts of 1st-degree
murder against 2 Chicago men on Wednesday, hours after the death of
Douglas County Chief Deputy Tommy Martin.
Mr. Martin, 59, died at Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana at 11:30 p.m.
Tuesday, where he had been in grave condition since being shot on June 21
while on duty.
State's Attorney Kevin Nolan said he is still researching whether he'll
seek the death penalty for William B. Thompson, 26, and Yusef Kareem
Brown, 23. Because a police officer was the victim, a sentence of life in
prison is mandated if the men are convicted.
While state police earlier said they believe Thompson was the man who
fired the shots at Mr. Martin, Nolan said he charged both men with his
murder under a theory of accountability.
1 of the 3 counts alleges that the murder occurred during the commission
of a felony, namely the armed robbery that had just occurred at the rural
Camargo home that Mr. Martin was on his way to investigate when he was
Should Nolan elect to seek the death penalty for Thompson and Brown, the
county would receive assistance from the state for the costs of
prosecuting the men. If not, the expense would fall on Douglas County.
Judge Mike Carroll arraigned the two at the county jail Wednesday. They
were present with their court-appointed attorneys, Jeannine Garrett for
Brown and Jim Lee for Thompson.
Nolan said when he mentioned the possibility of the death penalty to the
judge, Brown said: "I've been dead all my life."
"The charges are as they are," Nolan said. "Until we decide one way or the
other, everyone has to assume it's a capital case. I'm hoping to be filing
something regarding my election on Wednesday."
The law says he has 120 days from the filing of murder charges to decide
whether to seek the death penalty.
Brown and Thompson are being held in lieu of $5 million bond each.
Meantime, an autopsy was done on Mr. Martin late Wednesday afternoon.
His body was given a police escort from the Renner-Wikoff Chapel on Philo
Road in Urbana, which is used by the coroner's office as a morgue, to
Bloomington, where the autopsy was done. Police were also expected to
escort the body from Bloomington to the Hilligoss-Shrader Funeral Home in
Tuscola after the autopsy.
Among the agencies represented in the procession were Illinois State
police, Urbana, Champaign, University of Illinois, Rantoul and Parkland
police, the Champaign County sheriff's office, and Pro and Arrow ambulance
Private funeral services will be Sunday. Public graveside services will be
at 3 p.m. Sunday at Tuscola Township Cemetery, Tuscola, with military
rites accorded. Visitation will be from 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday at Tuscola
Community High School, 500 S. Prairie St., Tuscola.
(source: The News-Gazette)
Mob trial witness says fear if death penalty made him talk
A government witness says he sees himself as "a rat" for spilling mob
secrets but added that he agreed to testify against his brother to avoid
getting the death penalty.
Nicholas Calabrese (KAL'-uh-brees) is the government's star witness at the
trial of his brother, Frank Calabrese, and four other men. They've pleaded
not-guilty to charges that accuse them of taking part in a racketeering
conspiracy that included 18 murders.
Nicholas Calabrese says the FBI used a bloody glove he carelessly left in
front of a North Side bingo parlor to place him at the scene of the 1986
murder of mobster John Fecarotta. He told jurors today that he dropped the
glove as he fled the shooting.
The story capped a week of testimony in which Calabrese has described a
parade of mob murders carried out by himself and other members of the
(source: Associated Press)
OHIO----female is spared federal death sentence
Wife who hired hit man spared death penalty
In Akron, a federal court jury on Wednesday spared a woman the death
sentence for hiring her lover to kill her wealthy husband on the Ohio
Turnpike 2 years ago and instead said she should spend the rest of her
life in prison.
Donna Moonda, 48, who was convicted of murder-for-hire earlier this month,
quietly cried upon learning her sentence.
Moonda's attorney, David Grant, had asked the jury in U.S. District Court
not to sentence her to death because she suffers from a personality
disorder and because the shooter, Damian Bradford, 26, was sentenced to
just 17 years in prison.
Prosecutors said she had promised her drug dealer boyfriend half of Dr.
Gulam Moonda's multimillion-dollar estate in return for the killing.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Linda Barr said Moonda deserved a death sentence
because she had her husband killed for the worst possible reason: money.
About 3 hours into their deliberations, jurors asked Judge David D. Dowd
Jr. if there was any other sentence they could consider on the charge of
Dowd told them there was no other option. Several jurors nodded their
heads in understanding. They returned a decision about an hour later.
"Had they had the option, she probably would have been sentenced to less
than life without parole," Grant said.
Bradford, of Monaca, Pa., who met Moonda in drug rehab, testified during
Moonda's trial that he followed the couple from their Hermitage, Pa., home
near the Ohio state line and shot the doctor in the side of the head after
she pulled over on the turnpike, supposedly to let her husband take the
Grant said his client was holding up well.
"She's ready for the next fight," Grant said of Moonda, who maintains her
innocence and will appeal after she is sentenced Sept. 17. Dowd can't
change the jury's sentence.
In pushing for the death sentence, Barr told the jury that Moonda was more
culpable in the crime than Bradford because she came from a better
upbringing than the convicted drug dealer. She also helped plan the
killing, knowing her husband's schedule and what he was worth financially.
(source: Cincinnati Post)
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