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The Murder of Ann Harrison

A Kansas City television station provides some background on the Nunley case, the subject of this morning's post.

In 1989, Roderick Nunley kidnapped, raped and killed Kansas City teenager Ann Harrison. The death of the 15-year-old girl is still fresh in the minds of many around Kansas City.

On March 22, 1989, Harrison walked to the end of her driveway near 68th and Manchester to wait for her school bus. Retired detective Pete Edlund remembers that day all too well.

"Every parent's worst nightmare, their child is snatched off the street at the end of her driveway waiting for a school bus. That doesn't happen every day," he said.

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Nunley drove Harrison to his mother's house. She was forced to crawl down to the basement. Each man accused the other of raping Harrison, but eventually, DNA testing linked Taylor directly to the rape.

The men then forced Harrison into the trunk of the car and tied her up. Both men testified that Harrison begged for her life, offering them money if they would spare her.

Instead, Nunley and Taylor grabbed two knives from the kitchen and both men stabbed the girl.

"Here was an innocent child, who was brutally sexually assaulted and murdered and it wasn't like they stabbed her once and walked away, it was brutal," Edlund said.

In Nunley's videotaped confession, he says he knew Harrison would die in the trunk.

The medical examiner testified that it took about half an hour for the girl to die after her kidnappers stabbed her 10 times.


This stay is a disgusting development. Hasn't the family suffered long enough?

Judge Gaitan and all of the judges on the Eighth Circuit ought to be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. There is no legal basis for this stay--it is against the letter and the spirit of the law. Why do capital murderers get courts to bend over backwards for them?

At some point, given the flagrant violation of law here, one has to wonder whether the federal courts should simply have jurisdiction withdrawn once a full round of habeas appeals are heard.

Judge Gaitan ought to resign.

Another little tidbit: http://www.fox4kc.com/news/wdaf-ann-harrison-murder-nunley-101910,0,162298.story

Note the end of the story. Nunley tried to kill someone while on death row. Sounds like he should have been executed years ago.

SCOTUS denied the Warden's motion to lift the stay with only Scalia dissenting.

The most charitable explanation is that they simply didn't have enough time to review and so gave the benefit of the doubt to the murderer. Even so, that's a serious abdication of their duty. If they cannot discharge it responsibly, then federal courts should have their wings clipped. This is a travesty.

So lets look at Hailey Owens family and think about Hailey's case 25 years now. Will we be thinking about her killer and asking these same questions? Nunley and Taylor have had 25 years that Ann did not have with her family. Maybe we should ask the Owens family what their opinion is on Ann's case?

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