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News Scan

CT Death Row Inmate Seeks Execution: The Wire Report of CT Post News reports Connecticut death row inmate Steven Hayes intends to waive his appeals and be executed. Hayes along with his accomplice were convicted of the brutal home invasion attack on the Petit family in 2007, which included the rape and murder of Jennifer Hawke Petit, and the murders of her two daughters Hayley, 17, and Michaela, 11.  The husband and father was beaten and thrown in the basement and barely escaped with his life after the murderers set fire to his home.  Both Hayes and his accomplice were convicted and sentenced to death. Hayes has repeatedly tried to kill himself. He currently claims that the prison staff is torturing him and subjecting him to cruel and usual punishment. Although Hayes previously told one of his attorneys that he would not oppose appeals of his sentence, he now says that following automatic review in the Connecticut Supreme Court, he plans to forgo appeals and habeas in order to expedite his execution. He said that he would formally announce his intentions this week. .

FL Execution Delayed 2 Days: David Ovalle of the Miami Herald reports that the scheduled October 16 execution of Florida death row inmate John Errol Ferguson will be delayed for two days to allow his attorneys more time to file appeals. Ferguson was convicted of murdering six residents during a home invasion robbery in 1977.  He was separately convicted of killing two teenagers in 1978. The young couple had gone out for ice cream when Ferguson, pretending to be a cop, stopped them. Ferguson shot the young man in the head, and raped and murdered the girl, stealing her class ring. Ferguson's attorneys argue he is severely mentally ill and not competent for execution. Bradford Circuit Judge David Glant will rule on the appeal Friday.

First Street Gang Designated Transnational Criminal Organization: The Los Angeles Times reports that the street gang Mara Salvatrucha MS-13 was designated by the Federal Government Thursday as a transnational criminal organization.  U.S. Treasury Department is now able to freeze financial assets from the gang and its members. Also, financial institutions are prohibited from transacting with any gang members. The gang is estimated to have 30,000 members in 40 U.S. States and in the District of Columbia. MS-13 is an El Salvadorian street gang, with much of the money generated by the gang funneled to leadership in El Salvador.   

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