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Posts tagged: death penalty

Fort Hood Killer Sentenced To Die

A military jury sentenced Maj. Nidal Hasan to death on Wednesday for the 2009 shooting rampage at Fort Hood, giving the Army psychiatrist what he believed would be a path to martyrdom in the attack on unarmed fellow soldiers. The American-born Muslim, who has said he acted to protect Islamic insurgents abroad from American aggression, never denied being the gunman. In opening statements, he acknowledged to the jury that he pulled the trigger in a crowded waiting room where troops were getting final medical checkups before deploying to Iraq and Afghanistan. The same jurors who convicted Hasan last week had just two options: either agree unanimously that Hasan should die or watch the 42-year-old get an automatic sentence of life in prison with no chance of parole/Associated Press. More here. (Kathy Plonka SR file photo: PFC George Stratton, 18, showed the exit wound from the shot he took to the back of his left shoulder during the shooting at Fort Hood)

Question: Deserving sentence?

Candidate: Death To Rebellious Kids

Charlie Fuqua, the Republican candidate for the Arkansas House of Representatives who called for expelling Muslims from the United States in his book, also wrote in support for instituting the death penalty for “rebellious children.” In “God's Law,” Fuqua's 2012 book, the candidate wrote that while parents love their children, a process could be set up to allow for the institution of the death penalty for “rebellious children,” according to the Arkansas Times. Fuqua, who is anti-abortion, points out that the course of action involved in sentencing a child to death is described in the Bible and would involve judicial approval. While it is unlikely that many parents would seek to have their children killed by the government, Fuqua wrote, such power would serve as a way to stop rebellious children/Huffington Post. More here.

Question: Not ready for prime time?

Political Game: Why Kill Rhoades?

Paul Ezra Rhoades was convicted in Idaho of three murders, though all told he is believed to have murdered at least six people. One of the three murders he was convicted of in Idaho was the sister of a family friend. I know what her death did to her family. I have seen the cost, the pain and the anger. However, knowing what I do, I cannot fathom any amount of closure or relief coming from the state executing Rhoades. It will not bring back his victims and it will not make what he did any less evil. If the law enforcement officials who brought Rhoades to justice will not find any satisfaction in his execution, what satisfaction can the state find in their killing him?/The Political Game. More here.

Question: Would you witness an execution if you could do so?

Inmate who wanted death penalty linked in new slaying

RICHMOND, Va. (Aug. 1) — A Virginia inmate who warned prosecutors he would kill again if not given the death penalty for strangling his cellmate was involved the death of another inmate, authorities said.

Wise County Commonwealth’s Attorney Ron Elkins confirmed late Saturday that Robert Gleason Jr. was “involved” in the death of 26-year-old Aaron Alexander Cooper, though Elkins refused to elaborate. Gleason, who was already serving a life term for murder before killing his cellmate last year, has not been charged in the death. Read more. Posted at

Should inmates who ask for the death penalty be granted their request?

Bill Would Ban Idaho Firing Squads

Item: Bill that would ban firing squads advances in Idaho Legislature/Idaho Statesman

More Info: A bill that would remove firing squads as an alternative for execution in Idaho is moving on to the full Idaho House. The House Judiciary and Rules Committee unanimously approved the HB107 Tuesday afternoon. … Staffers with the Idaho Attorney General’s office told the committee the changes were necessary to prevent lawsuits and make Idaho’s antiquated death penalty laws constitutional. If approved, it would also make it faster for Idaho to carry out death warrants.

Question: Is there a universal method of execution that you’d prefer in extreme capital punishment cases that warrant the death penalty?

IVA: Death Penalty Growth Industry

Kevin Richert of the Idaho Statesman complains that Gov. Otter’s proposed 2009-2010 budget creates three new full-time attorneys in the public defender’s office, the agency responsible to defend death-row inmates. He claims this has turned capital punishment into a “growth industry” in Idaho, even though Idaho has executed only one criminal in the last 50 plus years. But there is a connection between an increase in public defenders and a decrease in executions, and the connection is out-of-control judicial activism. Taxpayer-funded public defenders are nowhere required in the Constitution, and have been imposed on a compliant and meek public only by activist judges/Bryan Fischer, IVA. More here.

 Question: Do you agree as Bryan Fischer does that judicial activism has created a “growth industry of capital punishment”?

Death Penalty: Idaho Growth Industry

State government will be leaner next year: the going estimate is that about 100 jobs will disappear from a work force of close to 27,000. But one potential growth area is the business of the death penalty. Gov. Butch Otter’s proposed 2009-10 budget creates about three full-time attorney’s positions in the state’s appellate public defender’s office. This is the agency assigned to defend death-row inmates. … To put this in context, the 2009-10 budget creates only 8.12 full-time positions. So more than a third of the new positions would go toward a capital punishment infrastructure — in a state that has executed exactly one inmate in the past half century/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question (from Kevin Richert): Can somebody argue for the efficacy of the death penalty?

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D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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