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September 15, 2011 | By David Savage, Washington Bureau
The U.S. Supreme Court stopped Texas officials Thursday evening from executing a Houston murderer who was sentenced to die after jurors were told he posed a greater danger to public safety because he is black. The justices acted on an emergency appeal after Texas Gov. Rick Perry and state judges refused to intervene. The high court's brief order said the "stay of execution of sentence of death … is granted" while the justices decide whether to review the case of Duane Edward Buck.
January 17, 2014 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON - An Ohio inmate's drawn-out execution this week led to an outcry about the increased use of new lethal injection drugs by the country's 32 death penalty states, a practice that experts predict will lead to more problems. Dennis McGuire took more than 15 minutes to die Thursday, appearing to gasp and snort, according to witnesses. His lethal injection was a combination of two drugs never tried before in a U.S. execution, according to experts at the Death Penalty Information Center in Washington, D.C. McGuire, 53, was sentenced to death for the 1989 rape and stabbing death of Joy Stewart, 22, who was seven months pregnant.
In one way, "Place of Execution," which premieres Sunday on PBS' "Masterpiece Contemporary," is a typical "cozy" mystery. There is a manor house involved and an assortment of colorful locals who may or may not have committed murder. But the story, based on the book by Val McDermid, is more ambitious than that: In 1963, 13-year-old Alison Carter (Poppy Goodburn) walked away from that manor house and disappeared. The image of a beautiful young girl vanishing from a tiny, picaresque English village surrounded by the requisite but still dramatic wind-swept moor captivates George Bennett (Lee Ingleby)
June 26, 2013 | By Matt Pearce and Molly Hennessy-Fiske
Kimberly McCarthy was put to death Wednesday, the 500th person Texas has executed in the 37 years since the death penalty was reinstated. The former occupational therapist was convicted and sentenced to death in 1998 for the beating and stabbing death of her 71-year-old neighbor, Dorothy Booth, during a robbery. McCarthy, 52, was pronounced dead at 6:37 p.m., 20 minutes after receiving a dose of pentobarbital, according to the Associated Press. With her last words, she thanked her minister and her family, but did not mention her victim.
May 18, 1994
The execution of John Wayne Gacy (May 10) was a sad spectacle. People marched the streets of Chicago demanding Gacy's execution, a prosecutor declared that it would be "a privilege to see him draw his last breath," and law enforcement officers threw a party to celebrate the extinguishment of life. These people have succumbed to hatred, becoming killers just like Gacy. Gandhi said that "an eye for an eye makes us all blind." We need to open our eyes and see that state-sanctioned killing cheapens the value of life for all of us. ROBERT M. MYERS Sherman Oaks What a strange world we live in!
December 16, 1988 | Associated Press
The Supreme Court today blocked the execution of a Sikh convicted of assassinating Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and ordered the president to reconsider the man's request for clemency. The order effectively prevented the execution of a second man convicted in the 1984 assassination, a defense attorney said. A five-judge panel said the constitution allows President Ramaswami Venkataraman to examine the case and decide whether a pardon is warranted.
February 8, 2010 | By Ramin Mostaghim and Borzou Daragahi
The defendant met with his lawyer once for 15 minutes before he was sentenced to death and hanged. When the lawyer complained to authorities, they ignored her. When she tried to enter the courtroom where he was being tried, they threatened her with arrest. And when she spoke out publicly at what she described as a gross miscarriage of justice, they shut off her cellphone. "Unfortunately, despite repeated warnings, you have kept contacts with counter-revolutionary media and for two months from today your cellphone will be cut off," read a text message she received.
February 21, 2010 | By Art Winslow
The Autobiography of an Execution David R. Dow Twelve: 274 pp., $24.99 You support the death penalty -- almost two-thirds of the country did, in a 20096 Gallup Poll. You may consider it retributive justice or perhaps a deterrent. You do not find racial disparities or irregularities in its application overly troubling. You believe most attorneys and judges act dispassionately and in accord with the dictates of law and the Constitution. Still, there is the Texas problem.
April 27, 1992
Reading the paper (April 22), it seems many people were opposed to the execution of Harris. They think the law was cruel by taking him in and out of the gas chamber. Stop and think about how cruel he was to the families of the two young men he murdered for no reason. Who cares about the psychological trauma he went through? He deserved every second of it. It also seems to be a waste to me to have feature stories on the man saying how he died in the gas chamber. He committed a terrible crime and paid the price for it. TONY SCIARRINO Santa Clarita
January 7, 1988 | United Press International
An oil derrick worker with a ninth-grade education became the first person executed in the United States this year when he was put to death early today for murdering a woman during a $1 robbery. Robert Streetman, 27, was pronounced dead at 3:26 a.m. after receiving a lethal injection. It was the 94th execution since the Supreme Court lifted its ban on capital punishment in 1976. Streetman was condemned for the Dec.
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