November 15, 2009
Re "When death penalty means a better life," Nov. 11 Isn't it nice that our death row inmates enjoy such luxurious accommodations compared to the rest of the prison populace? You talk about milking the system. The fact that Billy Joe Johnson requested the death penalty because he knows he won't be executed for at least 30 years, and is now able to enjoy a life of relative comfort at taxpayer expense, is yet another example of our bureaucratic stupidity. The estimated cost of $138,000 a year to house these death row inmates (compared to $49,000 a year to house other prisoners in maximum- security facilities)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 12, 2000
The Innocence Project, which has used DNA testing to help free at least 65 wrongly convicted death row inmates in several states, is coming to California. Last week, California Western Law School in San Diego announced that it will house the California Innocence Project, which is slated to start work this fall. Justin Brooks, who will oversee the project, faces a rising tide of e-mails and letters from death row inmates, their parents and lawyers, all seeking help.
May 8, 2007 |
LAST MONTH, the state of Texas executed James Lee Clark, a plumber's assistant who raped and killed a teenage girl. Clark's lawyers argued in vain that their client, a high school dropout with a low IQ, should have been spared because of his mental impairment. Within hours of Clark's death, California's highest court spared Jorge Junior Vidal from a possible death penalty trial in the torture and murder of a teenager because he is mentally retarded. Five years ago this June, the U.S.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 2, 2001
Convicted killer Justin Merriman will become the 12th man sent to death row from Ventura County since the death penalty was reinstated in California in 1978. Here is a look at the other men and their crimes: * Kenneth McKinzie was convicted in 1999 for strangling 73-year-old Ruth Avril during a botched robbery at her Oxnard apartment building Dec. 21, 1995.
March 30, 2003 |
It's a lonely existence of steel bars and razor wire, of yearning for a change in the repetition, of watching the sunlight fade through a sliver of a window and wondering whether that means death at the end of a needle is a day closer. This is life on South Carolina's death row. It's a long wait to die -- more than a decade for most.
December 24, 2010 |
It's not that difficult to find the heart of this small east Texas city with wide-open spaces and lanky pine trees that breach the pale blue sky. Cruise past the 67-foot statue of Sam Houston (who's buried here), the town square and the plantation-style homes with the porches that wrap all the way around. Turn on to Avenue I, and there it stands: high, red brick walls the color of a schoolhouse. Inside are cramped cinderblock cells, inmates, guards and ? what put Huntsville on the map ?
March 12, 1999 |
A judge dismissed murder charges against a man who spent nearly 17 years on death row before Northwestern University student journalists helped gather evidence to clear him. Since Anthony Porter's release Feb. 5, key witnesses have recanted their testimony and Alstory Simon of Milwaukee was videotaped admitting to the 1982 shooting deaths of two teenagers in Chicago.