Thursday, March 19, 2015

Rick Perry, R-Murderer and Believer of Junk Science

UPDATE VI:  "What happens in Texas when you get a man executed on the basis of bad testimony?"

Read Slate, Justice Deferred.

Perry, the former prosecutor John H. Jackson, and others should be prosecuted for conspiracy to commit murder.

UPDATE V:  "In a major turn in one of the country’s most-noted death penalty cases, the State Bar of Texas has filed a formal accusation of misconduct against the county prosecutor who convicted Cameron Todd Willingham, a Texas man executed in 2004 for the arson murder of his three young daughters.

Following a preliminary inquiry that began last summer, the bar this month filed a disciplinary petition in Navarro County District Court accusing the former prosecutor, John H. Jackson, of obstruction of justice, making false statements and concealing evidence favorable to Willingham’s defense.

'Before, during, and after the 1992 trial, [Jackson] knew of the existence of evidence that tended to negate the guilt of Willingham and failed to disclose that evidence to defense counsel,' the bar investigators charged."

Read the Washington Post, Prosecutor accused of misconduct in disputed Texas execution case.

UPDATE IV:  "More than a decade after Cameron Todd Willingham was executed for the arson murder of his three young daughters, new evidence has emerged that indicates that a key prosecution witness testified in return for a secret promise to have his own criminal sentence reduced. . .

In two days of interviews recently with the Marshall Project, [the witness, Johnny E] Webb gave the most detailed account to date of how he came to testify against Willingham. He said that [the prosecutor, John H.] Jackson threatened him with a life sentence in the robbery case — a possibility under Texas law because Webb had several prior convictions — unless he testified. . .

During Willingham’s three-day trial in August 1992, Jackson pointedly asked Webb on the witness stand whether he had been promised a lighter sentence or some other benefit for his cooperation. Webb told the judge and jury that he had not."

Read the Washington Post, Letter from witness casts further doubt on 2004 Texas execution

UPDATE III: For those Republi-cons who are reading challenged, a reminder that you can watch the PBS Frontline documentary on the Willingham case.

UPDATE II: Read the report of the Arson Review Committee, A Peer Review Panel Commissioned by the Innocence Project regarding Willingham’s case, and another case of alleged arson. One executed, but one not, based on junk science.

UPDATE: "There is little dispute that the arson evidence in Willingham’s case, based on myths that had permeated fire investigations for years, was invalid. Every independent expert, including the top experts in the country, has concluded that there was no evidence of arson." Read SSRN, The Execution of Cameron Todd Willingham: Junk Science, an Innocent Man, and the Politics of Death.

"Faith and reason are not mutually exclusive, but Perry makes you think they are." Read the Washington Post, Rick Perry, the Republicans’ Messiah?

And Perry's no messiah, he rushed to have the man executed for political reasons, his reelection.

Read a previous post, Executing an Innocent Man and Trying to Hide It.

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