[Deathpenalty] death penalty news------FLA., ALA.
rhalperi at mail.smu.edu
Tue Jul 24 11:28:37 CDT 2007
Judge: Injections flawed
A judge hearing arguments on the constitutionality of Florida's lethal
injection procedures has ruled that a death row inmate cannot be executed
unless the Department of Corrections makes changes to its protocol and
The ruling came in an unusual hearing Sunday before Circuit Judge Carven
D. Angel in Ocala in the case involving Ian Deco Lightbourne, condemned
for the 1981 slaying of Nancy O'Farrell. The ruling could potentially
impact other executions.
Angel made his ruling after 11 days of evidentiary hearings concerning the
botched Dec. 13 execution of Angel Diaz, who took more than 30 minutes to
die, after IV needles inserted into his arm punctured his veins.
''Our objective is to carry out a process that is consistent with evolving
notions of the decency of man. It is not going to involve infliction of
pain or lingering death,'' the judge said.
Neal Dupree, the Capital Collateral Regional Counsel, an agency
representing death row inmates in their final appeals, said he believes
Angel's ruling could impact the Nov. 15 scheduled execution of Mark Dean
Schwab, 38, condemned for the 1992 kidnapping, rape and murder of
11-year-old Junny Rios-Martinez, of Cocoa.
(source: Associated Press)
Executions on hold again in Florida
Lethal injections in Florida are on hold again after a judge questions the
Department of Corrections' procedures. Lethal injections in Florida are on
Less than a week after governor Charlie Crist reinstated them, an Ocala
judge has essentially put them on hold again.
Circuit Judge Carven D. Angel said he is not confident in the Department
of Corrections' procedures for the death penalty.
And that the state has to come up with a new program.
This is more fallout from the both execution of Angel Diaz in December. It
took more than 30 minutes for Diaz to die after needles inserted in his
arm punctured his veins.
The led to a moratorium by then-governor Jeb Bush on the death penalty,
which Crist had lifted last week.
There is no word yet on how this will affect the planned execution of Mark
His death warrant was signed last week by Crist.
(source: BayNews 9)
Orme gets death again
Defense attorney Mike Stone told Circuit Judge Judy Pittman on Monday that
the legal system was designed so that everyone could "point somewhere
else" as to whos responsible for the death penalty.
Stone said the 11 jurors who recommended a death sentence in Roderick
Michael Ormes case could be comforted by the fact that it was only a
recommendation. The judge, he said, who is required to follow the
recommendation, could blame the jury.
Stone never mentioned his client, but Pittman did.
Pittman said Orme "brutally beat, raped and murdered" Lisa Redd on March
3, 1992, when Redd, a Bay Medical Center nurse and Orme's former
girlfriend, answered his call for aid during a drug binge. Redd came to
Orme's motel room and determined that Orme needed help after ingesting
crack cocaine and alcohol all day.
"When the victim threw the defendant's unused cocaine in the toilet, he
became angry," Pittman said. "He beat, raped and murdered her. This act of
kindness on her part became a fatal mistake."
The judge found the murder to be especially heinous, atrocious or cruel, a
legal aggravator used to justify the death penalty.
"This was not an instantaneous or painless death," Pittman said.
She also found that the state had proven beyond a reasonable doubt 2 other
legal factors: that the murder happened during a rape and was done for
financial gain. Pittman said Orme stole Redd's car, money and jewelry
after the murder and bought more drugs.
She said any one of these aggravators outweighed all 9 of the mitigating
circumstances the defense brought out in the May retrial of the penalty
phase in this case. The Florida Supreme Court overturned Orme's 1993 death
sentence, but upheld his conviction, in 2005 and sent him back to Bay
County for a new penalty phase trial.
The justices said the 7-5 vote for death in 1993 could have been different
if jurors knew of Orme's "bipolar disorder." The high court returned the
case with instructions that more evidence of Orme's mental health should
be presented to jurors.
Pittman said after hearing all the evidence she didn't believe that Orme
has bipolar disorder. She said Orme's problem was his addiction to drugs,
a self-imposed condition.
Orme's other lawyer, Russ Ramey, said this year's jury had no choice but
to recommend death because Orme would have been eligible for parole in 10
years if he had been sentenced to life, and jurors knew that.
The parole system in Florida was done away with shortly after Orme's first
trial, but a life sentence would have been imposed under the guidelines in
place then meaning the possibility of parole after 25 years in prison.
Prosecutor Larry Basford told Pittman that this jury heard more evidence
in Orme's favor than the first.
"This jury has spoken loudly and clearly that the aggravating factors
clearly outweigh the mitigating circumstances," Basford said. "The death
penalty is appropriate."
(source: News Herald)
Death penalty foes urge DNA testing for death row inmate
A Brewton woman has taken her efforts to persuade Gov. Bob Riley to delay
an execution scheduled for Thursday to the road.
Lisa Thomas began walking to Montgomery on Saturday to participate in a
rally on the steps of the Capitol on Wednesday and ask Riley to order DNA
testing for Darrell Grayson, scheduled to die by lethal injection.
"If 29 million people can call and vote for 'American Idol,' I hope they
will get off their behinds and ask Gov. Riley to do the DNA test," Thomas
said Sunday while walking along U.S. 80 east of Selma.
Selma lawyer Faya Toure, who walked with Thomas part of the way Sunday,
said they want the state to begin administering post-conviction DNA
"That should be a constitutional right because it's like a denial of due
process and equal protection," said Toure, the wife of state Sen. Hank
Sanders. "Most states in this country have such a law."
(source: Associated Press)
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