Results matching “jack camp”

News Scan

Ohio Murderer Facing Execution:  A double-murderer in Ohio will be given a special pillow to help him breathe during his execution, which is scheduled for Wednesday.  Andrew Welsh-Huggins of the Associated Press reports that Alva Campbell's decades-long, two-pack-a-day smoking habit resulted in his chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, making it difficult for him to breathe while lying on his back.  Campbell, an habitual felon, was paroled in 1992 after serving 20 years for killing a man in Cleveland.  In 1997, while facing trial for several armed robberies, he faked paralysis and was transported to court in a wheelchair.  Before reaching the courtroom, Campbell overpowered a sheriff's deputy, took his gun, and carjacked an 18-year-old, whom he later murdered with two gunshots to the head.  Last week, Governor Kasich rejected Campbell's request to commute his death sentence.

Update:  The U.S. Supreme Court denied a stay and a petition to take up the case for full review.  No dissent is noted.

To End the Death Penalty: Lie More

Except for punishment for outright perjury or planning to kill government witnesses, there is no penalty known to me against the defense side's engaging in perverse or deceitful behavior in order to advance the ball.  Indeed, such behavior is not merely condoned but commended:  The client is presumed innocent; actual innocence (or guilt) is all but irrelevant; the state employs politically ambitious and morally tone-deaf prosecutors; the cops cheat; and criminal punishment is per se the outcropping of a backward, racist American culture that needs stiff blowback in order even to start to straighten out.  So if this particular client is guilty or even worse than guilty, hey, look, this is not my problem.  The state has all the resources, and we need to wake up  --  have a "national conversation" about justice, that is.

Ever heard that one before? 

I mention it here because of an entry Doug Berman has up today titled, "Could poor health help save the life of Ohio's 'poster child for the death penalty'?"  It's about an Ohio killer fighting off his scheduled execution because he is, so his lawyer claims, very ill.  You have to read all the way to the end to get the punchline:

Campbell argues that poor health is one reason he shouldn't be put to death, but he used an earlier, false health claim to commit the crime that put him on death row. Campbell feigned paralysis from a glancing bullet wound suffered during a robbery arrest. As Campbell was being taken to the Franklin County Courthouse for a hearing on April 2, 1997, he sprang from his wheelchair, overpowered a deputy sheriff, took her gun and fled. He then carjacked Dials, who was at the courthouse to pay a traffic ticket. After driving Dials around for hours, Campbell ordered him onto the floor of his truck and shot him twice.

Want to frustrate the death penalty?  Just keep lying.  I must ruefully admit, it works much of the time.

News Scan

Rolling Stone Settles in Fake Rape Case:  In November of 2014 the Rolling Stone article "A Rape on Campus" by Sabrina Erdely described how seven men attending a University of Virginia frat party gang raped a co-ed named "Jackie."  T. Rees Shapiro of the Washington Post reports that the story went viral, making national headlines reinforcing the rich, arrogant, sexist, fratboy narrative which had previously fallen apart in the 2006 Duke Lacrosse case.  Then a police investigation, and a separate one by the Columbia University School of Journalism, announced that "Jackie" had lied.  No rape had occurred.  Today, UVA fraternity Phi Kappa Psi settled its lawsuit with Rolling Stone for $1.65 million.  

Two Prison Guards Killed During Escape:  A manhunt is underway in Putnam County, Georgia after two inmates on a transport bus overpowered and killed two guards and fled.  Fox News reports that both inmates are armed and are considered very dangerous.  Both inmates had been serving time for armed robbery when they overpowered the guards and shot them with their own guns.  A witness told police that the inmates were seen driving a dark green Honda.    

CA Bill Reduces Sentences for Gun Crimes:  The California Assembly Committee on Public Safety is considering a bill today that would eliminate the current sentence increase for criminals who use guns in the commission of felonies.  As the Los Angeles Times reports, SB 620 by Senator Steven Bradford (D. Los Angeles), which passed out of the state senate last month, would make the 10 year enhancement for the use of a firearm during the commission of felonies including rape, robbery and carjacking optional with the judge.  Supporters of the bill believe that removing the mandate will reduce racial disparities in sentencing.  Virtually every state law enforcement and crime victims group opposes the bill.   

News Scan

Parolee Car Jacking: A Bronx man has been arrested for multiple car jackings at gunpoint. Dray Clark of ABC News reports that 27-year-old Clarence Brooks is the prime suspect in a series of car jackings and shootings that took place on Tuesday. Brooks reportedly shot the driver of the first car he stole and fled the scene, doing the same in a second incident. Brooks will be charged with attempted criminally negligent homicide as well as multiple counts of strong-arm robbery. At the time of the shootings, Brooks was out on parole for recent robbery charges and was already facing charges from a March 21 arrest for being a felon in possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment.

Florida Prosecutor Seeking the Death Penalty: A Florida prosecutor says that he will be seeking the death penalty in the case of a man who is being charged with the murder of his pregnant girlfriend and a police officer. According to Fox News, State Attorney Brad King filed notice of intent Monday to seek the death penalty in the case of Markeith Loyd. Loyd was arrested after a week-long manhunt in January following the murder of his pregnant ex-girlfriend Sade Dixon and the slaying of an Orlando police officer Lt. Debra Clayton. The current Orlando State Attorney Aramis Ayala announced her unwillingness to seek capital punishment in this case or any other, so Gov. Rick Scott reassigned this and 21 other cases to a nearby circuit where King could deal with them.  According to this story in Politico, liberal hedge fund billionaire George Soros pumped nearly $1.4 million in to Ayala's campaign to elect her last November. 
Chicago Man Charged in Quadruple Homicide: Charges have been filed in connection with a quadruple homicide that took place in Chicago last Thursday. Jeremy Gorner of the Chicago Tribune reports that 19-year-old Maurice Harris has been charged with four counts of first degree murder according to Chicago police reports. This event accounts for four of the seven lives lost on Thursday. The police are still attempting to discern whether all of these deaths may have been connected, but it is believed that this quadruple homicide was in retaliation for a gangland shooting that had taken place the night before.

Update:  See follow-up post.

I have been battling the opponents of the death penalty for a very long time.  In that time, I have found that the intentionally misleading half-truth is their weapon of choice, and I spend a lot of time correcting the mistaken impressions they intentionally create.

However, the opponents are not above outright lying when they think they can get away with it.  A whopper has just come to my attention from the state of Nebraska, where the people are going to vote on whether to abolish or retain the death penalty.

Ernest Goss, Scott Strain, and Jackson Blalock have released a paper titled The Economic Impact of the Death Penalty on the State of Nebraska: a Taxpayer Burden?  The paper is sponsored by the anti-death-penalty campaign.  On page 23 we find this:

According to Scheidegger,48 "There is no credible evidence that replacing the DP with LWOP will result in significant added trial costs to the state due to defendants refusing to plead guilty and forcing prosecutors to meet their burdens at trial. The few studies that have been completed support the proposition that the threat of the DP does not increase plea bargain rates."

48Kent S. Scheidegger, The DP and Plea Bargaining to Life Sentences, Criminal Justice Legal Foundations, Feb. 2009, p. 10.
Note the quotation marks.  The authors are not saying that this is their interpretation of my results.  They are saying that these are my exact words and my interpretation.  This is a bald-faced lie.

Murder Continues To Skyrocket, As Does Evasion

The Wall Street Journal carries an article of considerable concern.  It's titled, "Murders Rise in 29 of the Largest Cities in First Half of 2016."  It starts:

The number of murders in 29 of the nation's largest cities rose during the first six months of the year, according to the results of a survey released by the Major Cities Chiefs Association on Monday.

Overall, homicides jumped 15% in the 51 large cities that submitted crime data, compared with the same year-ago period. 

The article notes that the 15% figure is artificially high to some extent because of Chicago's out-of-control violent crime and the gruesome Jihadist attack in Orlando. What it fails to note is that murder rose by 17% in the 50 largest cities last year. An increase of 17% in 2015, combined with (even an inflated) increase of 15% so far in 2016, is shocking.  There's no other way to put it.

Shocking, that is, unless, like the Major Cities Chiefs  --  an overwhelmingly liberal group that marches arm-in-arm with the Brennan Center  --  you have a stake in minimizing the problem.

America's Under-Incarceration Problem

The pro-criminal narrative being pushed by such luminaries as Al Sharpton, George Soros and Sen. Mike Lee lectures us that America has too many people in prison for too long.

Paul Mirengoff at Powerline begs to differ:  In more than a few cases, we don't have them in for long enough.

I've argued that America has an under-incarceration problem. Criminals whose records clearly show they should be in jail have, instead, been released and are on the streets committing violent crimes, including some very bloody, high-profile ones.

Here's another example. Samuel Harviley, paroled from prison less than three months ago, is being held without bond for shooting an off-duty Chicago police officer outside his home earlier this week. In withholding bond, the local judge said that Harviley "poses an extreme danger to the rest of us out in public."

Indeed, he does. And he did three months ago when he was released early from jail.

Harviley was paroled from state prison on New Year's Eve after serving four years of a nine-year sentence for a 2011 carjacking, an inherently dangerous crime. A nine year sentence is meaningless if it can be completed in four. Harviley's early release always posed a danger to the community. Now, it has resulted in the shooting of a police officer.

But hey, look, as the anonymous Republican Senate aide said, we can't get everything right.  Boys will be boys!  If police officers get shot, there's really nothing to see, folks.  Move along.
Constitutional scholars debate the question in the abstract, but WaPo Fact Checker Glenn Kessler looks at the historical record.

Though the examples are few, they tend to support the right of Republicans to handle -- or not handle --this nomination as they wish.

News Scan

FL Supreme Court Considers Pending Execution:  A condemned Florida murderer is scheduled to be the first person executed in the state since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that its death penalty system is unconstitutional.  Larry Hannan of the Florida Times-Union reports that attorneys for 51-year-old white supremacist Mark James Asay, who is set to be executed on March 17, argue that the execution should be delayed indefinitely until the Florida Legislature amends the law, which was found to be in violation of the Sixth Amendment to the Constitution because the judge rather than the jury makes the final decision of whether someone is sentenced to death.  Assistant Attorney General Charmaine Millsaps disagrees, stating that the execution should proceed because the U.S. Supreme Court did not rule one way or another on retroactivity.  Others argue that the decision is "merely procedural" and should not interfere with planned executions.  Asay was sentenced to death in 1987 for murdering a black man and a cross-dressing prostitute he believed was a black woman, but was actually white.  A Supreme Court ruling of his case is expected to be made this week.  Update:  The Florida Supreme Court issued a stay on Asay's execution.

NH Gov. Criticized for Heroin Epidemic Inaction:  The mayor of Manchester, New Hampshire publicly criticized Gov. Maggie Hassan for failing to step up and address the deadly heroin epidemic plaguing the Granite State.  Bill McMorris of the Washington Free Beacon reports that last June Gov. Hassan vetoed a budget that would have significantly boosted drug program spending and two months later, she denied Mayor Gatsas' request to establish a drug court.  Other critics say that Gov. Hassan has stonewalled spending on the issue, failed to appoint a top official to lead the fight and is currently more focused on her Senate campaign than governing her state.  Last month, 60 people overdosed on opioids leading to 14 deaths, making February 2016 the single-deadliest month on record in the state.

House to Vote on Immigration Case:  House Republicans are set to vote in the next few weeks on a resolution that would allow lawmakers to file a brief in the Supreme Court case that will determine if President Obama overstepped his authority with his 2014 executive action on immigration.  Susan Ferrechio of the Washington Examiner reports that the vote could permit the House to file the brief in the United States v. State of Texas case "as an institution on behalf of self government," says Speaker Paul Ryan.  Obama's deferred deportation program is being challenged in the brief by Texas and two dozen other states, arguing that the president "exceeded his constitutional authority" when he went over the heads of Congress to defer deportation of illegal immigrants.

Is Eight Enough?

Mark Sherman has this article for AP. 

Is eight enough?

The Supreme Court has managed to function effectively at less than its full nine-member strength for two extended periods in the past 50 years. The question now is whether the death of Justice Antonin Scalia in the middle of the court term and a polarizing presidential campaign will make it harder for the justices to get their work done.
One paragraph in the article needs correction, though.

The most notable of the deferred cases may have been challenges to the death penalty, according to Bob Woodward and Scott Armstrong's book "The Brethren." Harry Blackmun joined the court in May 1970, after the Democratic-controlled Senate rejected President Richard Nixon's first two choices. It was another two years, after the retirements of two more justices, before the court took up the issue and struck down every state death penalty statute.
It was, in fact, two weeks, not two years, "before the court took up the issue."

News Scan

Supreme Court to Rule on Immigration:  The Supreme Court justices agreed Tuesday to review President Obama's plan to shield five million illegal immigrants from deportation in a review of a lower court rulings that blocked the sweeping executive actions from going into effect.  Fox News reports that the Obama administration's plan primarily benefits the parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents, bringing the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans program into the forefront of the issue.  Critics argue that Obama's plan is unconstitutional because he overrode the legislative authority in Congress, bypassing the "constitutionally ordained legislative process" to rewrite the law unilaterally.  The case is likely to be argued in April and decided by June.

FL Courts Face Death Penalty Dilemma:  Between now and April 5, five death penalty trials are scheduled in a Florida court, which is a problem, given that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last week that the state's death penalty procedures are unconstitutional.  Larry Hannan of the Florida Times-Union reports that the high court ruled on Jan. 12 that Florida's death penalty is unconstitutional because the final decision on life in prison or death is decided by a judge rather than a jury.  An attorney representing one of the condemned inmates scheduled for trial in the coming months said that the Florida Supreme Court could either issue an emergency ruling, or the Legislature could act quickly to amend the death penalty sentencing law.  Each option will take considerable time, making it unlikely that any case is to move forward anytime soon.  Whichever option is taken, their remains the question of whether defendants can be tried under a new statute that was passed after they committed their crimes.

NYPD Ordered to Purge Counter-Terror Docs:  A U.S. court has directed the New York Police Department to remove an extensive report from its website that pertains to the rise of Islamic extremists in the West and counter-terrorism efforts as part of a settlement reached earlier this month with Muslim community advocates.  Adam Kredo of the Free Beacon reports that the case, spearheaded by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) since 2013, focused heavily on NYPD's 2007 radicalization report from its website.  The report examined how radical individuals make their way to the U.S. and carry out terror attacks, in an effort to provide local law enforcement with information about domestic terrorists and their operations.  Several legal and national security experts are critical of the court decision, noting that it will not only diminish officers' understanding of how terrorists organize and operate, but is also "part of a larger campaign by Muslim advocacy organizations in the United States to dismantle surveillance programs on that community."

U.S. Begins Screening Refugees' Social Media Accounts:  The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency that screens refugees, announced Sunday that they are now permitted to probe the social media accounts of Iraqi and Syrian refugees.  Stephen Dinan of the Washington Times reports that USCIS director Leon Rodriguez says that though the agency will now be able to screen refugees' social media accounts for potential terrorism-related clues, it is likely improbable that they will be able to check the accounts of all 8 million immigration applications the agency receives each year, forcing  them to prioritize and target only specific programs or countries.  The agency has been faced with recent scrutiny following several high-profile events, such as last month's terror attacks in San Bernardino when it was reported that the jihadist couple responsible for the attack had posted online swearing allegiance to the Islamic State, and the arrest earlier this month of a man who traveled to Syria to fight after being admitted as a refugee in 2012.  The Senate will vote Wednesday on whether to require President Obama's chiefs of intelligence, Homeland Security and the FBI to certify every refugee is low-risk before being admitted to the U.S.

News Scan

Parole Blocked for Killer of CA Man Buried Alive:  California Gov. Jerry Brown has blocked parole for the man responsible for the murder of a developmentally delayed man in 1980, who was beaten and buried alive.  Don Thompson of the AP reports that Brown ignored a state panel recommendation for 52-year-old David Weidert's parole, deeming him too dangerous to be released.  Initially sentenced to life without parole, an appeals court reduced Weidert's sentence in 1984 to 25 years to life with the chance of parole after striking down two special circumstances.

Unmonitored, Undocumented Sex Offenders Roam Freely:  Eleven convicted sex offenders living in the country illegally are residing in several western Washington neighborhoods without being monitored by authorities.  KIRO 7 reports that despite efforts to deport them, a Supreme Court ruling requires them to be released from custody if their home countries refuse to take them back. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement admit that they do not track these criminals once they're released onto American streets.

Raise the Age NY Campaign Fails:  New York lawmakers were unable to reach a decision regarding changing the age of criminal responsibility in the state in legislation which sought to raise the age of criminal responsibility from ages 16 and 17 to age 18.  Jackie Davis of the Legislative Gazette reports that Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who proposed the legislation in his State of the State address, plans to take executive action to remove 16-and 17-year olds from state prisons and into separate facilities.  The 'Raise the Age NY' campaign advocates that changing the age of criminal responsibility would produce results that echo those of an Illinois study, which concluded that when teens are charged as juveniles the adolescent crime rate goes down.

1 Down, 1 To Go

William Rashbaum and Benjamin Mueller report for the NYT:

Richard W. Matt, one of the convicted murderers who staged an elaborate escape from New York's largest prison nearly three weeks ago, was shot and killed on Friday by a federal agent, two people with knowledge of the situation said.

The authorities encountered Mr. Matt after the inmate, who was on foot, tried to carjack a camper vehicle near Malone, N.Y., a third person with knowledge of the situation said. The driver sped away and called 911, and law enforcement officers responded.

There was a report of a second episode of gunfire as officers pursued David Sweat, the other inmate. The officers did not see Mr. Sweat, but they heard him running. His whereabouts was unclear.

A Bald-Faced Lie? -- Part II

Kent notes that defense counsel's argument to the jury this morning that, if it imposes LWOP, Tsarnaev's case "will be over for good" is  --  if reported accurately  --  a bald-faced lie.

That's correct, but there's more.  The groups and interests, and some of the same lawyers, urging no death penalty for Tsarnaev  --  or anyone  --  will take only so much time before they're back in court urging that his sentence be shortened.

There is simply no such thing as a case's "being over for good."  This was proved in spades by Judge John Gleeson's years-long campaign to overturn a perfectly legal sentence he imposed on a violent carjacker.  I have written about this before, e.g., here and here.  Indeed, Gleeson and the defense kept going years after the Supreme Court granted cert and rejected the defendant's case on the merits.  

The "litigate-to-infinity" approach is even more prevalent when the defendant is given an LWOP sentence. With unlimited time on their hands and nothing to lose by trying  --  and extremist legal groups more than happy to pitch in  -- murderers serving LWOP can and do file petition after petition.  

But wait, there's more!  Suppose abolitionists succeed in getting the death penalty repealed.  What are the chances that, the next day, they won't petition for a re-sentencing for Tsarnaev, on the theory that he got LWOP when a now-illegal sentence was the only alternative?

"Over for good" my foot.  Defense counsel should be ordered to correct his statement and then be sanctioned by the court.

Jack Weinstein, Move Over

Judge Jack Weinstein of the Eastern District of New York made a name for himself with his 400-page memorandum purporting to justify an illegal 30 month sentence for a distributor of child pornography.  The Second Circuit was not buying it and unanimously reversed.  Not one to take correction by the higher court lying down, Weinstein issued a Holier-Than-Thou memorandum the next day setting the appellate judges straight (while grudgingly setting the case for re-sentencing).  I discussed the case here, here and here.

The case got so much attention from me because it illustrates why we have, and need, stern mandatory minimum sentencing.  Judges spent at least the 20 years after 1960 showing why they cannot be trusted with unlimited discretion.

The lesson was expensive (to crime victims) but simple:  They'll use it to benefit criminals; criminals will take the goodies; and crime will skyrocket, as it did before we came to our senses in the 1980's.

Today, a Weinstein wannabe in Southern California made the news with an even more graphic lesson.  This time, however, the victim could at least speak for herself. At least I think she could.  I mean, a person has learned to talk by the time she's three, right?

Accountability, Rolling Stone Style

Rolling Stone sold a lot of issues, and made a big splash in journalism, by "reporting" the story of a savage gang rape undertaken at, and perpetrated by members of, the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity at the University of Virginia.  As a result, the frat house was picketed and vandalized, and some of its members had to go into hiding.  It, along with every other fraternity on campus, had its activities suspended without a hearing, and was compelled to undergo some kind of sex sensitivity "training."

It was a hoax.  The fraternity did nothing wrong and its members did nothing wrong. It's not that the sex was consensual.  It simply never happened.  Apologists for the source of this fraud, one (understandably anonymous) "Jackie," still maintain that "something awful might have happened to her that night," but they provide not a shred of evidence.

They are correct, however, that something awful has happened.  As with Darren Wilson and the Duke lacrosse team, an atrocious accusation got peddled and broadcast nationwide, not in the service of truth, but in the service of PC Belligerence and Self-Anointed Victims.  

A Culture of Rape or a Culture of Lies?

According to multiple sources, including this ABC News piece, the sensational story of a sadistic gang rape by (white, let's not forget that) frat boys is unsupported by any substantive evidence.  In other words, after searching for months, the police couldn't find a single witness or a single piece of forensic evidence to support the story.  Zip. The ABC article begins (emphasis added);

A five-month police investigation into an alleged gang rape at the University of Virginia, described in graphic detail in a Rolling Stone article, showed no evidence the attack took place and was stymied by the accuser's unwillingness to cooperate, authorities said Monday.

The article entitled "A rape on campus" traced the story from a student identified only as "Jackie," who said she was raped at a Phi Kappa Psi fraternity house on September, 28, 2012. Police said there were numerous discrepancies between the article and what they found in their investigation.

"All I can tell you is that there is no substantive basis to conclude that what was reported in that article happened," Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo said.

Longo said Jackie first described a sexual assault in May 2013 when she met with a dean about an academic issue, but "the sexual act was not consistent with what was described" in the Rolling Stone article. When she met with police, she didn't want them to investigate the alleged assault.

She also refused to talk to police after the article was printed in November and ignited the national conversation about sexual assaults on college campuses. 

Ah, yes, our old friend the "national conversation."

News Scan

Parolee Arrested After Violent Pursuit: A California man with a lengthy criminal history is behind bars once again after leading police officers on violent chase through Los Angeles.  KTLA reports that 29-year-old Aaron Lorta carjacked one woman after threatening her with a handgun and attempted to steal two other vehicles during the violent pursuit.  Lorta was released from state prison and placed on parole last June after serving just one year for a robbery conviction, he is currently being held in county jail without bond.

MO Executes Convicted Murderer: A Missouri man who was sentenced to death for the murder of his neighbor has been executed after spending nearly 25 years on death row.  The Associated Press reports that Walter Storey broke into his neighbor's home in hopes of stealing money for beer.  When the victim confronted him, he beat her savagely leaving her with several broken bones before he slit her throat.  Storey was the first person executed in the state of Missouri so far this year.

LAPD On Alert After Violent Weekend: Police officers in Los Angeles are on high alert after responding to nearly two dozen shootings in just four days.  Veronica Rocher of the Los Angeles Times reports that since the start of 2015, both violent crime and property crime rates have increased by 10% and gang violence is up an astonishing 25%.  Police believe the majority of the recent shootings are in fact gang-related, and have increased patrols in high-crime areas  to ease mounting gang tension.

Rape Hoaxes Galore

The assassinations of two New York policemen have gained fully warranted attention in recent days, and have knocked out of the headlines the University of Virginia/Rolling Stone rape hoax.  

Today I want to re-visit that story, both for its own lessons, and because it's related to the hate campaign against the police  --  that is, against a group consisting largely of white males.  The rape hoaxes and the "Police Are Nazis" crusade have the same general goal, that being to whip up disabling guilt among Those Who Enjoy Privilege (whites, men, the One Percent, fraternity members, people in uniform, etc.  -- anyone who's not among the Politically Correct will do well enough).

The reasons for whipping up guilt among the non-politically correct are multifaceted, but there's one in particular that stands out for purposes of this blog:  To sap the moral confidence needed to enforce criminal law.  Once we become convinced that policemen (e.g., Darren Wilson) are hooligans, and white frat men (e.g., "Jackie's" alleged attackers) simply walk past the punishments that would apply to others, we come to doubt both the fairness of the system and, thus, our own moral standing to enforce its rules.  Their enforcement then becomes irresolute.

Q:  Who will most directly benefit when that happens?

A:  Criminals.  And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the point.  Don't be fooled.

The rape hoaxes (not including the infamous Duke case) are here

Exoneration Inflation, Continued

Of all the propaganda efforts of the anti-death-penalty movement, the most successful has been the notorious "innocence list," which can be found on the website of the Death Penalty Information Center.  Six years ago, Ward Campbell published in the IACJ Journal (Institute for the Advancement of Criminal Justice) an article titled Exoneration Inflation noting the various ways that people have been included on the list even though they had not been determined to be actually innocent or if their cases were simply irrelevant to the debate over the present system because they were sentenced under a different, since-abandoned system.

Surprisingly, three of the latter made it on to the notorious list just this year.  Three men convicted in Ohio for a 1975 killing and removed from death row just a couple of years later when the statutes were struck down have now been released altogether.  It is indeed regrettable that they spent so much time unjustly in prison, but the cases have nothing to do with the current death penalty debate.  They were not sent to death row under a law anything like any law now in effect in the United States or that has been in effect for 36 years.

In a report to be released tomorrow the DPIC will crow about a "record" number of "exonerations" of "former death row inmates," but the fact that these three were briefly on death row under a long-ago abandoned system has no relevance to our current capital sentencing system.
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