OHIO – Palmer Says, ‘I deserve to die’ – execution scheduled september 20, 2012 at 10 a.m EXECUTED 10.35 A.m.

Update september 19, 2012 http://woub.org

A condemned Ohio man is set to be moved from the state’s death row in Chillicothe to the site of his Thursday execution in Lucasville.

State officials are expected to move Donald Palmer to death row on Wednesday, the day before he is set to be executed by lethal injection for a crime committed 23 years ago.

The 43-year-old was convicted of aggravated murder for fatally shooting two strangers along a Belmont County road on May 8, 1989.
Palmer’s attorney says he hadn’t planned on filing any other appeals and expected the execution to proceed.
Palmer also decided not to request mercy from the Ohio Parole Board, which can recommend clemency for a condemned inmate to the governor.
Including Palmer, 10 Ohio inmates are scheduled for execution through March 2014.

September 16, 2012 http://www.theintelligencer.net

CHILLICOTHE, Ohio – Donald “Duke” Palmer’s worldly possessions include a television, a radio, hot pot, a lamp and a fan.

He will spend much of this week giving those items to his fellow death row inmates. Palmer is scheduled to die by lethal injection at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility in Lucasville.

During a death row interview last week at Ohio’s Chillicothe Correctional Institution, Palmer, a Martins Ferry native who murdered Charles Sponhaltz and Steven Vargo along Belmont 2 near the Jefferson County line on May 8, 1989, offered regrets for the murders but said he’s ready to die.

“I killed Mr. Sponhaltz and I killed Mr. Vargo and I deserve to die for it,” Palmer, 47, said.

He talked at length during the hour-long interview about his victims and their loved ones but asked that his apologies not be published until after his death.

“I don’t want (my apologies) to be cheapened or be seen as a ploy to somehow stop what’s going to happen,” he said. “I’m not trying to forgive my way out of this. I’m not.”

Palmer said he did not ask for clemency because he does not want to spend the rest of his life in prison.

“I mean, either way is a death sentence in prison,” he said. “I don’t want to sit around and wait for forever to come down. I’m just at the end of this. I’m tired. I want it to be known that it’s OK that I am being executed.”

Palmer said he has known his execution date for 14 months.

Asked how he is dealing with knowing the exact date and time he is going to die, Palmer said, “I’ve been dealing with it since day one. I didn’t know that I had more than five years coming. Then 10 years went by. And then 15 years went by. And then 20 years. … By the time 20 years go by, I was ready to die. I’m just ready.”

While confirming that Ohio is not putting an innocent man to death, Palmer said “No” when asked if he received a fair trial.

He said he appealed for a new trial in an effort to get to the truth about what happened.

“They didn’t convict me of the truth,” he said.

“Now, like I said, I killed these two guys. So I know that I deserve to die for this. But, they didn’t convict me of the truth. They convicted me of innuendo. They convicted me of things that didn’t happen. They put on evidence of things that just weren’t true.”

Palmer’s recollection of May 8, 1989, the day of the murders, goes like this: he awoke that morning in Columbus, Ohio, with “the shakes” due to his cocaine addiction. He went to a liquor store with his co-defendant, Eddie Hill, where they purchased a bottle of whiskey. Palmer said he drank 80 to 90 percent of that bottle during the day.

The two drove to Belmont County and eventually made their way to Belmont 2, near the Jefferson County line. There, they encountered Sponhaltz when Hill’s vehicle struck the rear the Sponhaltz’s vehicle.

Hill and Sponhaltz exited their respective vehicles, followed by Palmer who had a gun in his hand. Palmer said he attempted to punch Sponhaltz when the gun went off, striking Sponhaltz in the head. He then shot Sponhaltz once more in the head, killing him.

“Everything happened in a panic and fear and in bad, bad judgment, bad decisions, drunken judgment. I’m an addict, I’m afraid and I’m drunk. And it was just, you know, anything that could have gone wrong did go wrong and I made all the wrong decisions,” Palmer recalled.

Vargo appeared a few minutes later, stopping to see if the men needed help. Palmer also shot him twice in the head.

“Vargo died because he showed up at the wrong place at the wrong time,” Palmer said.

Asked about his lifestyle at the time, Palmer said, “I was a punk, and I was an addict. I was … a broken person. I was messed up because of my divorce. … That’s why I tried to commit suicide on Feb. 6, 1989. … That was my identity. Father. Husband. I got married the week after I turned 18 at the First Christian Church in Martins Ferry. And, this was my life. …

“I didn’t put God first in my life. And I know that’s why my life didn’t work out for me. But when I got divorced it broke me. I ran around and tried to fill a hole inside of me. Everything. Drugs. Sex. Running around. Fast cars. Motorcycles. Living in Florida on the beach and sailing. You name it, I did it. I had no fear of doing anything. And I was living fast and loose and, I don’t know, God wasn’t around then. Not in my life anyway.”

Palmer said he sometimes questions why he lived while Sponhaltz and Vargo died.

“If I had died, Sponhaltz and Vargo wouldn’t have been killed just a few months later,” he said, referring to his failed suicide attempt. “So it made me question why would God do that? Why would he let me live and these two die to go all the way to this point? But I did find an answer to the question. And the answer was because I didn’t put God first in my life. … People don’t understand when I say it but I thank God for death row. For putting me here. Because if he didn’t put me here, I would have died in my sins. … But now, I know that I’m saved. I know that I’m going to be fine. Every single one of us has a date.”

Palmer said he is a graduate of Martins Ferry High School. He said he worked for a time in construction in Charlotte County, Fla.

As for  Hill,Palmer filed an affidavit with the Ohio Parole Board maintaining that Hill didn’t have anything to do with the murders of Vargo and Sponhaltz. Hill currently is serving lengthy prison sentences for his role in the murders.

Hill “didn’t kill anybody. He couldn’t have stopped me from killing anybody. He didn’t know that I was going to kill anybody. He wrecked the car. He was drinking and driving and wrecked the car. That’s the only crime he committed before the murders,” Palmer said. “I shot Sponhaltz. Eddie ran and jumped down over the side of the road. Didn’t even see Vargo get shot. But, he got 30 to life on Vargo and only 15 to life on Sponhaltz. … I feel really bad that I got this man doing a life sentence.”

Aside from the possessions he will give to fellow inmates, Palmer said he has a few treasured items.

“The only things that mean anything to me are my pictures of my kids and my artwork and my Bibles. That’s it,” he said.

Palmer also said he misses his hometown of Martins Ferry, where he spent his childhood.

“I loved Martins Ferry,” he said. “I loved waking up every morning right across from Nickles Bakery and smelling that bread baking. I could see the Ohio River every morning. I’d see the northern tip of the Island. You could literally walk right down over the hill and go fishing. Every day, I’d sit there and look at Wheeling.

“I miss those things. I remember the train bridge before it was gone. I used to walk across it. Go play on it. Jump off of it. Do all kind of weird things. It’s like Tom Sawyer but not quite, you know. … But I miss that place. That is home to me.”

Palmer said executions should be more public.

“If you have a law on the books, especially when it comes to punishment, if this is what you agree to, as citizens you need to take responsibility for what’s being done in your name,” he said. “I’m not saying there should be public executions. I’m saying that it should be more open. The public should know that it’s being done in their name. They should know that their representatives are the ones who are killing. My blood is on their hands.

“I think the death penalty should be on the ballot every year because if you’re going to kill people, you need to take responsibility for what’s being done. Period. Show me where it’s a deterrent. It’s going to deter me from ever doing it again. But, how is that going to deter the 24-year-old punk that’s out there now?”

Asked what he would say to death penalty protesters who may be outside of the prison during his execution, he said, “Nothing. They’re going to have to work that out for themselves.”

Palmer said there is some irony in his execution date because his mother died on the same date in 2003.

“I’m going to be executed the same date as my mom died,” he said. “My clemency hearing (Aug. 16, 2012) was the same date my son died, Aug. 16, 2005.”

Palmer will be moved from death row in Chillicothe to Lucasville 24 hours before his scheduled execution.

He will visit with his son and daughter on the night prior to the execution but he does not want them to witness it. His attorney, pastor and a penal chaplain will serve as witnesses in his behalf.

As the interview concluded, Palmer offered these final words: “I apologize and I hope that when it comes time for them to find peace that they will seek the Lord Jesus because there is peace there.”

MISSISSIPPI – GARY CARL SIMMONS, JR.- Execution – June 20, 2012 6:00 p.m EXECUTED 6:16 p.m

Last Statement

“I’ve been blessed to be loved by some good people, by some amazing people. I thank them for their support. Let’s get it on so these people can go home. That’s it,” Simmons said as he lay strapped on a gurney in the execution chamber moments before the procedure was carried out.

Gary Carl Simmons Jr.

Source : Mississippi Court NO. 97-DP-01550-SCT

In the early morning hours of August 11, 1996, Jeffery Wolfe and Charlene Brooke Leaser drove from Houston, Texas, to Jackson County, Mississippi. They had only known each other a few weeks. Wolfe asked Leaser to accompany him on a trip to the Gulf Coast to “pick up some money” from some friends that were in his debt. Leaser later learned that the debt accrued some weeks earlier from a transaction involving drugs. While on the Gulf Coast, Wolfe also planned to buy new wheel rims and tires for his vehicleand then return through New Orleans with Leaser for a short vacation. Wolfe left Houston with twelve hundred dollars in his wallet. Leaser had approximately two hundred dollars in her purse.
Upon their arrival on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, they checked into the King’s Inn Hotel. Wolfe and Leaser fell asleep. Wolfe awoke early and left Leaser at the Hotel to meet Sonny Milano, Timothy Milano’s brother, who worked at a local tire store. Apparently, they met a few weeks earlier while Wolfe was on the Coast conducting his illicit business deal. Later that afternoon, Wolfe and Sonny returned to the hotel room to pick up Leaser for dinner. Sonny Milano left to get his girlfriend and the four met in Wolfe and Leaser’s room at the hotel. They all took Wolfe’s white Honda Civic to Shoney’s where they dined together

Sonny Milano testified that during dinner, Wolfe asked if Sonny planned to go to Simmons’ house that evening. Sonny Milano, over loud protests from his girlfriend, decided to go to Simmons’ house, arriving there late that evening after dropping her off. When he arrived, Simmons and Sonny’s brother, Milano, were the only two at the house. Simmons asked Sonny if he had seen Wolfe and Sonny told him that they ate dinner together. Simmons asked Sonny to get in touch with Wolfe. Sonny contacted Wolfe at his hotel room and told Wolfe that he was at Simmons’s house. Wolfe was pleasantly surprised to hear that Sonny was there, since Sonny’s girlfriend was opposed to his going. Wolfe told Sonny that he would be there in a minute.

Sonny conveyed this information to Simmons, who less than one minute later, approached Sonny as he talked to Milano and asked him to leave the house. Sonny testified that he did not find this unusual because “that’s just Gary.” Sonny left without explanation, with Wolfe on his way.
After dinner, as the couples parted ways, Wolfe and Leaser returned to their hotel where they relaxed before leaving to meet Wolfe’s debtors. They drove out to Simmons’s house but found no one home. After leaving the house to pick up cigarettes and a beverage, Wolfe and Leaser returned to the hotel. To pass the time, the two then went to Wal-Mart, and again tried to meet Simmons at his house. Still, no one was home. By this time it was nearly 10 in the evening, August 12, 1996. Again, they returned to the hotel. Near midnight, Wolfe received a phone call while Leaser stood outside smoking a cigarette. Wolfe hung up the phone, gathered Leaser, and left the hotel headed toward Simmons’s house.

Upon arriving at the house, they found Simmons sitting on the front porch. The three began talking, and Simmons offered them some marijuana. Leaser and Simmons smoked a marijuana cigarette, but Wolfe refrained. Milano drove up as they finished the marijuana. Simmons was related to the Milanos by marriage; Simmons married their sister, Lori, but that marriage ended in divorce. Simmons offered his guests a beer, and all four adjourned to the kitchen and living room area. Simmons walked into the kitchen to get a beer while Leaser sat down at a table in the living room to roll another marijuana cigarette.

Leaser heard Wolfe and Milano chatting in the doorway separating the kitchen and living room. Wolfe mentioned the money he was owed. Apparently, Simmons and Milano owed Wolfe between twelve and twenty thousand dollars. They did not have the money, nor did they have the drugs. Simmons returned from the kitchen while Wolfe and Milano discussed this predicament. Leaser testified that she heard gunshots and saw Wolfe fall to the ground. Immediately there after, Simmons grabbed Leaser and ordered her not to look in the direction of Wolfe’s body. Leaser noticed Milano standing directly behind Wolfe holding what was later identified as State’s exhibit 29, a .22 caliber rifle.

Simmons took her to a back bedroom of the house and forced her to lie face down on the floor. He placed himself on top of her and began questioning her, asking whether she or Wolfe were law enforcement officers, whether Wolfe had any drugs with him, and who knew they were in Mississippi. She became understandably hysterical and simply responded that she did not know anything, as she and Wolfe had only become acquainted a few weeks ago. After Simmons finished questioning Leaser, he tied her hands behind her back, bound them to her feet with some rope, and locked her in a metal box with dimensions similar to a large footlocker near his bedroom, telling her he was “on a time frame” that he could not “mess up.”

Leaser managed to untie her hands and feet and began kicking the top of the box unsuccessfully trying to get out. Leaser continued kicking the top of the box until Simmons returned. He removed her from the box, stripped her nude, tied her up again and returned her to the box. Again, Leaser managed to free herself from the knotted ropes, but remained unable to get the top off of the metal box holding her. After some length of time had passed, Simmons returned to the box and took Leaser out. Simmons was undressed. He again forced her to lie face down on the floor of the bedroom. Leaser was in the middle of her menstrual cycle, so Simmons forced her to remove her tampon. He then raped her, telling her that her life depended on how well she performed sexually. Leaser testified that she thought he was holding a pistol to the back of her head during the assault.
Afterward, Simmons asked Milano if he would like to rape her as well; Milano declined. Simmons then took Leaser to the bathroom, allowed her to clean up with an athletic sock; and yet again, tied her up and locked her in the box.

While Leaser was secured in the box, Simmons and Milano went about their plan to dispose of Wolfe’s body. Simmons, by trade, was a butcher in a meat market. Simmons’s co-worker, Charles Jenkins, testified that during the preceding workweek, Simmons sharpened all of his knives and took them home from work for the weekend. Jenkins testified that this was rather unusual because everyone normally leaves their knives at work. Apparently, the only time that Jenkins could remember anyone taking their knives home was before leaving on an extended vacation or quitting the job. Simmons took those knives and began dismembering Wolfe in the bathtub. After gutting him and severing his head and limbs, Simmons, with Milano’s help, began distributing Wolfe’s remains into the bayou that ran behind Simmons’s property using a boat Simmons borrowed from neighbor Donald Taylor only hours before. Alligators were known to inhabit the area. The bayou had a running current that eventually, through tributaries, fed into the Gulf of Mexico.

Leaser, still locked in the box, again untied herself. Simmons returned to the box smoking marijuana and offered some to Leaser. She accepted. After sharing the marijuana cigarette, Simmons locked Leaser in the box with a blanket, where she fell asleep. She awoke to the sound of the telephone ringing. When no one answered it, Leaser reasoned that the house was empty. She mustered all of her energy and began banging on the top of the box. The lid popped off and Leaser managed to get out of the house. On her wayout of the door, she grabbed a bag with some of her clothes and belongings in it. She then partially dressed herself. Leaser ran to a neighbor’s house and convinced the neighbor to call the police. Upon their arrival, Leaser recounted the events of the previous twenty-four hours.

Many different law enforcement agencies were involved in investigating the scene of the crime. Leaser told police officers that Wolfe was inside, had been shot, and that she had been raped. Once the police arrived, they began to secure the area and investigate Leaser’s claims. Moss Point police officers Lee Merrill and Richard Cushman entered the house with Leaser to determine if a crime had, in fact, beencommitted and if so, whether other victims were still in the house. Once the police officers saw blood and other evidence of violent crimes, they left the house and secured a search warrant.

After obtaining a search warrant, the police called the Mississippi Crime Lab, and they entered the house to gather evidence. From inside the house, they collected portions of fingernails from a wastebasketa used condom, and two used tampons, among other things. The local police department also recovered a Marlin model # 60 .22 caliber rifle, eight empty .22 caliber shell casings, and Wolfe and Leaser’s personal items originally left in their hotel room.

Near the rear of the property, a small “jon boat” was spotted near the water. Officers Magee and Graff investigated and requested that Officer Cushman join them. Near the boat they found four five gallon white buckets, one green plastic barrel, a one gallon bottle of Clorox bleach, a brush, a knife, and a bushhook. The brush and bushhook appeared to be covered in blood. An aluminum boat paddle was covered in bloody finger prints. In the boat, the officers discovered a piece of flesh. The local coroner called Dr. Paul McGarry to help with the investigation. Outside the house, but still on or very near Simmons’s property, Dr. McGarry found the rest of Wolfe’s body. Dr. McGarry testified that he and a group of police officers floated approximately two hundred yards down the bayou over which they found various parts of the skin, muscle, chest, abdominal walls, penis and testicles, lungs, heart, intestines, liver, as well as fingers and toes from a young human white male.

Dr. McGarry testified that the body parts had been cut sharply and with precision into block like sections of tissue. Most of the bones had been separated. Of the flesh he found and examined, several pieces had bullet holes in them. One portion of the chest had five bullet holes in it while another portion revealed one bullet hole. Some of the internal organs, the heart and lungs specifically, also had bullet holes in them. The left lung had a bullet lodged in it. Dr. McGarry testified that these gunshot wounds were the cause of death.
A further search of the area revealed Wolfe’s severed head, upper chest portion, and pelvic area sans reproductive organs. Over two days of searching, they found, on the first day, eighty-five pounds of human remains the largest of which was seventeen inches in diameter. The following day, they collected forty-one pounds of similar pieces, with the largest piece measuring nineteen inches. Some pieces found later were large enough to have identifiable tatoos. All of the flesh was identified as belonging to Wolfe.
Simmons left his house after dismembering and disposing of Wolfe. He drove to Mobile, Alabama, where he made a videotape for his ex-wife and children. Throughout the video recording, Simmons spoke to his family in the most general terms about what he had done, although he never specifically admitted committing any crimes. Simmons mailed the video cassette to his wife and drove back to the Coast. Upon arriving at his house, Simmons noticed that Leaser had escaped. He immediately left again and went to see his friend Dennis Guess.
Guess testified that while they were conversing, Simmons volunteered that he had just “whacked a drug dealer,…deboned him, cut him up in little pieces, and put him in the bayou.” Simmons told Guess that he used a butcher knife and bolt cutters to accomplish the task. Simmons also told Guess that he had a girl in a box and planned to “train her” and “keep her around as a sex toy,” but confessed that she had escaped. The conversation then turned to what realistic options Simmons had left. Simmons, after further discourse with Guess on this subject, decided against fleeing the jurisdiction or committing suicide. He eventually decided to turn himself in to the authorities.

Texas – Beunka Adams – execution – april 26 – EXECUTED

 Beunka Adams official website click here

Case from his official website

Beunka Adams is 29 years old today and is awaiting his execution at the Polunsky Unit, Livingston,Texas.

He has three children that he loves deeply.

Beunka Adams spends his days writing poetry or letters to his friend, creating artwork, working out and reading.

Beunka Adams also published a poetry book, named Delirium – A mind at death row.

In the beginning of October 2011 Beunka Adams’ final appeal was rejected by the US Supreme Court, even though there are obvious flaws in Mr. Adams’ legal procedure, doubts about the fairness of his trial and also doubts about what really happened that unfortunate day of a robbery back in 2002 in Rusk, Texas, USA.

Beunka Adams has repeatedly expressed his deepest regrets for taking part in the robbery. Mr. Adams is the father of three children and a healthy young man that can be a great asset to society in the future.

Resume of the events:

Richard Cobb and Beunka Adams robbed a store and took three hostages, two women and one man. They drove the hostages to a field where one woman and one man were shot. The man tragically died from his injuries. The women survived.

Beunka Adams has never denied his involvement in the robbery which led to the murder of a man by his accomplice.

The crime: Beunka Adams tells his story 

It was an extremely transitional point in my life (more than I knew) at the time when thismost unfortunate incident occurred. Not long before I had been kicked out of Job Corps and lost every stitch of clothing I owned. I had reunited with my children’s mother after a
little over a month separation and was preparing what would have been our third homesince I was 14 or 15 years old. I was out of work and in the coming two weeks were my step-son and my daughters birthdays… (I tell you this not to trivialize the events that
followed but to show you what motivated me to involve myself in this situation.)So when my friend/co-defendant showed up while I was working on the house and asked me to help him rob a store – I agreed.

It was not planned but I didn’t assume there would be any real physical violence. I didnot even carry my own gun. I was suppose to just follow his lead and be a pair of eyes, but shit went bad from the moment we entered the store and it became obvious my friend had
not planned anything out. He mostly stopped talking and nearly froze at the register.It was noticed there was a customer in the store and my friend whispered that one of the cashiers was his neighbor and he believed she recognized him…At that point I knew we were caught and really my only concern was getting the money where it needed to be. My friend was not talking and I had no idea what to do, so it was decided to take everyone from the store to buy some time to think. Now this is when some of the first lies start to occur. At trial one of the victims said she told me: “I know you, don’t I?” and I said: “yes” and took of my mask. This is not exactly true. She said: “I know you, don’t I? Your girlfriend used to work at Brookshines.”. At the time I had long hair and realized she was mistaken me for a friend of mine, but we did know each other and well, so to calm the situation a bit I took off my mask. The other girlknew my co-defendant so we where caught anyway. I was not known to hurt people for no reason, Nicky and Kenneth knew that.
If you read the transcripts it is said that there was laughter and conversation in the car though Nicky contends she was laughing to keep herself from crying. “Fast forward time” we wound up in an open field outside town. I really did not know what to do next because my friend was not really talking to me and acting weird. First idea was to put all three into the trunk and leave the car in a parking lot to be found in a few hours but all three of them would not fit. Two got in and I along with Nicky left walking (with no weapon). Now it has never been revealed what we spoke about by her nor me and I will not do so in this missive… We wound up having sex. I admit when I later gave a statement I conceded to rape but it was because I knew Nicky was engaged to be married and she would say that and if I did not, those officers would not believe one word that came out my mouth! I will be more than willing to take a lie detector test on the fact I never threatened or forced her to have sex with me, that or any other facts I present.
The others were let back out and it was decided they would take off in one direction and we would go the other. I stopped them because the direction they were headed led deep into the woods and they’d never come to a house, road or anything. It is decided they stay put. I turned and started walking towards the car assuming my friend was doing the same but after a few steps I heard the first blast!

read the whole story (download pdf) click here

Legal documents  click here

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Governor Rick Perry: Stop Beunka Adams’ execution!

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HUNTSVILLE (April 23, 2012)—Death row inmate Beunka Adams, 29, who was scheduled to receive a lethal injection this week for killing an East Texas man after robbing a convenience store, won a reprieve Monday from a federal judge.

april 13, 2012

Petitioner: Beunka Adams
Respondent: Rick Thaler, Director TDCJ-CID
Case Number: 5:2012cv00036
Filed: April 13, 2012
Court: Texas Eastern District Court
Office: Texarkana         Office
County: Cherokee
Nature of Suit: P. Petitions – Death Penalty
Cause: 28:2254
Jurisdiction: Federal Question
Jury Demanded By: None

december 2010, source: various

Beunka Adams is imprisoned on the Polunsky Unit of Texas death row for a crime that another man confessed to committing. He was convicted and sentenced to death at the age of 21. Beunka was involved in a robbery in which store employee, Kenneth Vandever, was shot and killed.

Beunka’s co-defendant, Richard Cobb, admitted to the killing in his trial. This information was suppressed at Beunka’s trial. His jury were told that he was the gunman and he was given the death penalty.

Beunka does not deny his guilt in participating in the robbery and he suffers huge remorse for what happened that night, but he is not a murderer and does not deserve to die for his crime!

His supporters say; “Beunka is indigent – he has no money to pay for a defence and his state-appointed defence attorney is overworked and unable to help him. We need to raise $150,000 to pay for a private lawyer and investigator to help save Beunka’s life”.

In 2007 Beunka’s attorney at appeal, Stephen Evans, presented ten points of error in his client’s criminal case. The court voted 9 to 0 that the objections held no merit. The court affirmed both the trial court’s judgment and the sentence of death.

Evidence presented in the court hearings alledged that on the night of the murder the men entered BDJ’s convenience store wearing masks and demanding money. One of them was armed with a shotgun.

Prosecutors say that after taking the money from the cash register it was said that they demanded the keys to a Cadillac parked outside. Two women employees of the store and Kenneth Vandever were forced the three into the car. After arriving at the secluded field, one female and Mr. Vandever were told to get into the trunk of the car. The prosecution says that the other female was taken away and sexually assaulted. Both women were wounded.

A supporter of Beunka Adams said; “criminals are punished in the name of justice. This sense of justice seems to have abandoned the scene of capital punishment. Even in the USA people who committed murder as a minor are put on death row, those without money cannot afford decent legal aid which almost immediately condemns them, and prisoners spend years and years on death row sometimes getting their execution postponed several times.

“People on death row go through years of isolation and uncertainty. This is when justice becomes torture”.

12/05/2007 source :http://www.tdcaa.com

An East Texas man condemned for a fatal shooting during an abduction and robbery at a convenience store lost an appeal Wednesday at the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals.

Richard Aaron Cobb was 18 when he was arrested along with a companion for the slaying of Kenneth Vandever in 2004. Vandever and two women were abducted from a store in Rusk. The three were taken to a field about 10 miles away near Alto, where one of the women was raped and all three were shot with a 20-gauge shotgun.

Vandever, 37, died of his injuries but the two women survived and testified against Cobb and his partner, Beunka Adams.

Both Cobb and Adams were convicted and sentenced to die. Records showed Cobb was on probation at the time for auto theft.

Vandever was described as mentally challenged after injuries in an auto accident left him with the mental capacity of a child.

Cobb’s conviction and sentence were upheld in January by the Court of Criminal Appeals. A subsequent appeal reviewed by the Austin-based court was rejected Wednesday.

The brief five-paragraph ruling from the appeals court upheld the recommendation of the trial court in Cherokee County, where a judge denied Cobb any legal relief after an evidentiary hearing.

Testimony showed Cobb fired the shot that killed Vandever, who frequented the store and would do things like take out the trash. Adams, then 20, was accused of shooting the two women who worked at the store. Adams’ conviction and sentence were affirmed by the court in June.

The men left the scene after believing the two women were dead, but the women were able to get up and run to houses nearby to get help. Adams and Cobb were arrested a few hours later in Jacksonville, about 25 miles to the north.

Both men still have appeals to pursue in the federal courts, and neither has an execution date.

Defense lawyers had argued at his trial that Cobb suffered abuse as a child and from fetal alcohol syndrome, the result of his mother drinking liquor while she was pregnant with him. Prosecutors presented witnesses who testified Cobb was able to tell the difference between right and wrong.

Executions in Texas, the nation’s most active death penalty state, and other states with capital punishment are on hold pending the outcome of a U.S. Supreme Court review of lethal injection procedures. Arguments in that case, initiated by two death row inmates in Kentucky, are set for early next year and a decision is expected before summer.

No. 11-9359

Beunka Adams v. Texas

from the Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas

Docket Entries

on March 13, 2012

Petition for a writ of certiorari and motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis filed. (Response due April 18, 2012)


Beunka Adams, Petitioner, represented byThomas Scott Smith

Delaware – Shannon M. Johnson execution – april 20, 2012 – EXECUTED

Shannon M. Johnson Mug Shot

Shannon M. Johnson
DOB: 11/18/1983
Race: Black Gender: Male
Offense: Murder 1st
Sentenced to Death: 09/05/2008
Date of Offense: 09/24/2006

Update april 17, sourcehttp://www.wboc.com

WILMINGTON,  The attorney for a Delaware death row inmate facing execution this week is asking a federal judge to reject an attempt by the convicted killer’s estranged sister to stop the execution.

Shannon M. Johnson has waived his right to further appeals of his conviction and death sentence and faces death by lethal injection early Friday.

But federal public defenders are trying for the second time to intervene in the case without Johnson’s consent.

They are arguing on behalf of Johnson’s sister that he is mentally incompetent and should not be executed.

But Johnson’s lawyer says in a letter to the court that she spoke with Johnson on Monday, and that he remains committed to proceeding with his execution.

Johnson was sentenced to death in 2008 for the September 2006 murder of a man who he found sitting in a car with Johnson’s former girlfriend. Johnson later shot the former girlfriend, but she survived.

march 14, 2012  sourcehttp://www.necn.com

Superior Court Judge M. Jane Brady ordered the April execution of Shannon Johnson after Johnson waived his right to a requirement that an execution be held no sooner than 90 days from the sentencing date.

Johnson was sentenced to death for the 2006 murder of Cameron Hamlin, 25, who was shot after Johnson found him sitting in a car with Johnson’s ex-girlfriend near downtown Wilmington. Johnson later shot the former girlfriend, but she survived.

After the state Supreme Court upheld his conviction and death sentence in 2009, Johnson said he did not want to pursue any further appeals.

“The court system has prevailed here and we can start having closure here in the Hamlin family,” Vandrick Hamlin, the victim’s father, said after Wednesday’s brief sentencing hearing.

“I think the judge sent a message out to the thugs and killers that you will not get away with murder here in the city of Wilmington.”

After Johnson sought to waive all further appeals following the state Supreme Court’s decision, federal public defenders tried to intervene in his case without his consent, arguing that Johnson was incompetent because he was mentally disabled. After Brady refused to allow them to participate in a state court competency hearing, they defied her order to turn over their files on Johnson to state prosecutors and Johnson’s state court attorneys.

Chief U.S. District Court Judge Gregory Sleet last year ordered the federal public defenders to turn over their files to state prosecutors and defense attorneys. He also voided their appointments to represent Johnson, declaring that they had misled the federal court into believing that they were acting with his knowledge and consent.

In a ruling last month in which she cited reports from several mental health experts, Brady declared that Johnson was not mentally disabled, was mentally competent to waive his right to further appeals, and that he understood the legal consequences of that decision.

Johnson’s defense attorney, Jennifer-Kate Aaronson, said after Wednesday’s hearing that he has been “steadfast” in his opposition to all further appeals.

“He fervently hopes no zealot files state or federal proceedings to override his competent decision,” she said.

The Facts  source : sentencing decision court (pdf)

Shannon Johnson, had a relationship with Lakeisha Truitt, from which was born a son. Ms. Truitt attempted to end the relationship on multiple occasions, because the Defendant was violent and unfaithful, and testified that she had not had a steady relationship with the Defendant for several years preceding the events that give rise to the charges in this matter. She did, however, continue to see the Defendant on some basis, including, but not limited to, effecting visitation with his son. From all appearances, Ms. Truitt had tried to move on with her life. She was a single mom, was employed, had purchased a home, and just prior to the initial incident in this case, began seeing another young man, Cameron Hamlin. By all accounts, Mr. Hamlin was a solid and sober individual, who had an interest in music, and was caring and thoughtful of his family. On September 24, 2006, Mr. Hamlin spent the night at Ms. Truitt’s home, and in the morning, was in the process of taking Ms. Truitt to her grandmother’s, where her son spent the night, and then was going to take his mother to church. The Defendant accosted the couple at a stop sign in his vehicle, and after some words were spoken, took out a gun and fired into Mr. Hamlin’s vehicle, killing him. Truitt was not injured in this incident. She ran to her grandmother’s, where she called the police, and reported the incident. Due to concern for her safety, she was advised not to go to her home until the Defendant was apprehended, but on November 10, 2006, she decided to go to her home and retrieve clothes for her son. On the way, she encountered one Rima Stewart, and had a brief conversation with her. As she was leaving her home, after having been there only a short time, the Defendant ran toward her car, brandishing a firearm, and fired several times, striking Ms. Truitt. To this day, a portion of one bullet remains lodged in her chest. The Defendant was later apprehended, and has been incarcerated since his arrest.

Statutory Aggravating Circumstance

The State alleged that the Defendant was previously convicted of a felony involving the use of, or threat of, force or violence upon another person, in this case, Rape in the Fourth Degree. To prove the Defendant’s prior conviction of the offense of Rape in the Fourth Degree, the State called the victim of that offense, Quana Thomas.Ms. Thomas testified that she had known the Defendant since she was of elementary school age, and that she saw him one day in the neighborhood and began talking with him regarding an incident involving a mutual friend, entering the Defendant’s car at some point in the conversation. During the conversation, the Defendant started the car, locked the doors and began to drive away. Ms. Thomas asked him where he was going, and asked to be let out of the car. The Defendant told her he had to take care of something and it would not take that long. He drove to an area near the Wilmington Hospital, at which time he stopped the car and began trying to kiss Ms. Thomas, who pushed him off her. She was 18, and seven to eight months pregnant at the time. Eventually he was able to pull her pants down and engage in vaginal intercourse with her. He told her the baby she was carrying should have been his. He then took her back to the neighborhood, and left her there. The Defendant was charged with Rape in the Second Degree and later entered a plea of guilty to a charge of Rape in the Fourth Degree. A certified copy of the
plea agreement was introduced as an exhibit.

September 5, 2008 Sentenced to death  read here

Convicted Killer Shannon Johnson Sentenced to Death Wilmington, DE – Today, Attorney General Beau Biden announced that Shannon M. Johnson, age 24 of Wilmington, was sentenced today by Judge M. Jane Brady to death by lethal injection plus 95 years
in prison.“Shannon Johnson is a threat to society. His conviction and today’s sentence ensures that justice will be served,” stated Attorney General Joseph R. Biden, III. “Victim and witness testimony was critically important to securing this conviction and I want to thank them for having the courage to come forward. Without their testimony a very dangerous person could be on the street.”
On September 24, 2006, Johnson shot and killed Cameron Hamlin in the City of Wilmington. On November 10, 2006, Johnson approached a car in Wilmington, driven by Lakeisha Truitt. He fired a gun at the car, smashed the driver’s side window, dragged her from the car, shot her, and fled the scene. Truitt was taken to the hospital, where she recovered. Johnson was arrested by Wilmington
Police on November 15, 2006. Johnson was convicted in New Castle County Superior Cour.

Feb 26, 2010 source : http://www.delawareonline.com/article/20100226/NEWS01/2260348

WILMINGTON — Death row inmate Shannon M. Johnson appeared in court Thursday to demand an end to all his appeals to speed his execution date.

This follows a pattern that Johnson, 26, set after his 2008 trial when he told the judge, after he was convicted of the murder of
Cameron Hamlin, that he was not seeking mercy and wanted to be sentenced immediately — without a penalty hearing — even if that
meant the death penalty.Dressed in an orange prison jumpsuit Thursday, Johnson told Superior Court Judge M. Jane Brady in a calm and cool tone that he wanted to waive any further appeals. He also wanted Brady to instruct the Delaware Federal Public Defender’s Office to drop the appeals it filed on his behalf in U.S. District Court and with the U.S. Supreme Court.

Johnson said attorneys with that office ignored his explicit instructions against filing appeals and asked Brady to prevent attorneys from that office from contacting him again.

Johnson said he told federal defenders, “I’d rather not waste your time” and that they should instead work on other cases. But he said
the attorney “then did everything I asked her not to do.”

Julie Brain, Johnson’s federal defender, declined to comment Thursday.
Johnson was not asked and did not explain why he was ending his appeals.

His attorney, Jennifer-Kate Aaronson, declined to comment on Johnson’s reasons, stating that to do so would violate attorney-
client privilege.

At that same hearing, Johnson’s other appellate attorney, James J. Haley Jr., asked Brady for permission to withdraw from the case,
stating in a motion that Johnson’s desire “to be executed as soon as possible” conflicted with his beliefs as a practicing Catholic.

Johnson said he did not object to Haley’s departure, and Brady dismissed him from the case.

Johnson, however, said he wanted Aaronson to continue to represent him, although he acknowledged that Aaronson too had advised him against ending his appeals.

Brady told Johnson that before she can accept his waiver, she must have him evaluated by a psychologist to make sure he is competent and that he fully understands the ramifications of his decision.

She said it will take about 60 days for a doctor to perform the evaluation and file a report, followed by an additional 30 days for
state prosecutors to respond to that report.

While this process could speed up Johnson’s execution by as much as a decade, Brady told Johnson the court would not act hastily.

“This will not be a fast process,” she said, and will not result in an execution being set next week or next month. “This is to make sure
you have time to reflect and that you are certain about your decision.”

Johnson was convicted two years ago of the Sept. 24, 2006, slaying of Cameron Hamlin. According to police and testimony, Johnson shot Hamlin after he found him sitting in a car in Wilmington with Johnson’s ex-girlfriend, who was also the mother of a child with

The ex-girlfriend escaped and was the only witness against Johnson in the homicide. Several weeks later, in November, Johnson tried to kill her by shooting her as she was getting into a car. She survived, and Johnson also was convicted of that shooting.

After the jury returned guilty verdicts, Johnson told the judge he wanted to be sentenced immediately, didn’t want to go through a
penalty hearing and would no longer cooperate with his attorneys. “I don’t need your mercy, the court’s mercy, none of that,” he told
Brady in March 2008. “If you want to sentence me to death … then let that be the case. All that other stuff, like, all that’s irrelevant.”

Deputy Attorney General Paul Wallace said after Thursday’s hearing that this is not the first time a death row inmate has waived his
appeals to hasten his date with the executioner.

No. 09-8949      *** CAPITAL CASE ***
Shannon Johnson, Petitioner
Docketed: February 4, 2010
Lower Ct: Supreme Court of Delaware
  Case Nos.: (434, 2008; 489, 2008)
  Decision Date: November 4, 2009
~~~Date~~~ ~~~~~~~Proceedings  and  Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Feb 2 2010 Petition for a writ of certiorari and motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis filed. (Response due March 8, 2010)
Mar 10 2010 Order extending time to file response to petition to and including June 7, 2010.
Apr 23 2010 Brief of respondent Delaware in opposition filed.
May 3 2010 Reply of petitioner Shannon Johnson filed.
May 5 2010 DISTRIBUTED for Conference of May 20, 2010.
May 24 2010 Petition DENIED.

~~Name~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~Address~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~Phone~~~
Attorneys for Petitioner:
Julie Brain Chief, Capital Habeas Unit (302) 442-6545
Delaware Federal Public Defender
800 King Street
Suite 200
Wilmington, DE  19801
Julie Brain @fd.org
Party name: Shannon Johnson
Attorneys for Respondent:
Paul R. Wallace Chief of Appeals (302) 577-8500
    Counsel of Record Criminal Division
Delaware Department of Justice
820 N. French Street, 7th Floor
Wilmington, DE  19801
Party name: Delaware

DELAWARE- Execution date set for Delaware Inmate – Shannon Johnson

march 14

A Delaware death row inmate who has waived his right to all further appeals of his conviction and death sentence has been sentenced to die by lethal injection.

A Superior Court judge set an April 20 execution date for Shannon Johnson during a brief hearing Wednesday. Johnson waived his right to a requirement that the execution be held no sooner than 90 days from the sentencing date.

Johnson was sentenced to death for the 2006 murder of a man whom he found sitting in a car with Johnson’s former girlfriend. He later shot the former girlfriend, but she survived.

After the state Supreme Court upheld his conviction and death sentence, Johnson said he did not want to pursue any further appeals.

source : http://www.wdel.com

case click here

MISSISSIPPI – Larry Matthew Puckett, march 20, 2012 – EXECUTED

The FACTS from court documents.


On October 14, 1995, shortly before 5:00 p.m., Mrs. Rhonda Hatten Griffis, age 28, was found lying in a large pool of blood next to the couch in the living room of her home on 198Sunrise Road, Petal, Mississippi. Mrs. Griffis was found wearing a t-shirt, and the only clothing on the lower part of her body was around her left foot. She had several gashes on the back of her head. There were other injuries to Mrs. Griffis’ head, back, and chest, including a deep laceration and three to four hesitation marks to the neck. She was also bleeding from her vagina. She had several defensive wounds on her hands, arms, and elbows. Mrs. Griffis died as a result of the injuries; the cause of death was cranial cerebral trauma, secondary to blunt force trauma. A wooden stick or club covered with blood was recovered outside the residence.

Rhonda’s mother, Nancy Hatten, lived next door, roughly 150-175 feet from the Griffis’ trailer. On the day of the murder, Mrs. Hatten helped Rhonda’s boys, Justin, age 7, and Jeffrey, age 5, put up Halloween decorations in the yard. Rhonda was not feeling well that day, suffering from a headache and bad sinus problems. Later that afternoon, Mrs. Hattenwas in her front yard when she heard a “scream and a thud” come from the Griffis’ trailer. Mrs. Hatten then ran home and telephoned the trailer. The phone rang four or five times, but there was no answer. Mrs. Hatten hung up and dialed again, but there was still no answer. She then immediately went to the trailer.

As Mrs. Hatten neared the trailer, she saw David Griffis, Rhonda’s husband, and their two boys driving up to the trailer. David had been hauling pine straw all day and was returning with his last load. A blue truck was parked in the vacant lot beside the residence. Nancy entered the trailer door at the kitchen/dining room area and called for Rhonda but there was no answer. Puckett came from the hallway into the kitchen/dining area and raised a club back and started towards Nancy. As Nancy backed away from Puckett, Jeffrey entered the house followed closely by David. Justin was still outside. Nancy then took the children, ran to her house, locked the boys in the bathroom, and called 911. This 911 call was received by the 911 system at 5:01:15 p.m. and answered by the 911 operator at 5:01:20 p.m. At 5:01:41 p.m., Nancy was placed on hold, as 911 received a call from the Griffis’ trailer. Mrs. Hatten identified State’s Exhibit Number 3 as the club that Puckett had in his hand in the trailer.by  The Griffis family knew Puckett because he was once employed  While Puckett was employed by David, the employees would gather at the Griffis’ house before leaving for work.

Jeffrey Griffis testified that when he entered the home, he saw Puckett with a club in his hand and holding on to Mrs. Hatten’s shirt. David Griffis testified that when he entered the home, he saw Mrs. Hatten with Puckett standing in front of her with the club in his hand raised over his head. David indicated that Puckett was wearing army-type coveralls. The club had blood and a white substance on it. David asked Puckett what he was doing in his house and Puckett said he had hit a deer on the road and came to get David’s help and to 4 use the telephone. David called out for Rhonda but no one answered. However, Puckett told David that Rhonda was down at her mother’s house. David asked Puckett about the blood on the club and Puckett indicated that it was blood from the deer. David then dialed 911 from a portable phone that was laying on the counter beside him. This 911 call was received by the 911 system at 5:01:27 p.m. and answered by the 911 operator at 5:01:41 p.m. This (David’s) call was terminated at 5:04:42 p.m. At some point, David and Puckett struggled and David got the club from Puckett. David tried to keep Puckett in the trailer until the police arrived. However, Puckett took off running towards the door. As Puckett was running for the door, David swung the club and hit Puckett on the shoulder. Then, as Puckett ran out the door, David threw the club at him. Dr. Michael West testified at trial that the club, State’s Exhibit 3, was consistent with the wound pattern found on Puckett’s back.

Once Puckett exited the trailer, David entered the living room and reached for his pistol that was usually on a gun cabinet just to the left of the living room door. However, the pistol was not there. David did not see Rhonda’s body lying in the living room at this time. David then ran into the bedroom to retrieve a rifle from the bedroom closet. The bedroomdoor is straight ahead as you turn towards the cabinet. As David exited the bedroom and re-entered the living room, he then saw Rhonda laying on the floor. He saw that Rhonda was injured and dialed 911 again to inform the police. David’s second 911 call wasreceived by the 911 system at 5:05:01 p.m. and was answered by the 911 operator at 5:05:07 p.m. This call was terminated at 5:11:45 p.m. The time between the end of David’s first 911 call and the beginning of his second 911 call was 18 seconds. Sheriff’s deputies and paramedics arrived within minutes.

Before David fired Puckett, David considered him to be a decent employee and even wrote a letter of recommendation for Puckett to become an Eagle Scout. Another former employer of Puckett’s, Ray Watkins, testified that shortly before Rhonda’s murder, a maul handle was broken at his work site. Watkins had the maul handle for several years,between seven (7) and ten (10) years, and believed the maul handle to be State’s Exhibit No. 3. Watkins also testified that he had seen the handle in Puckett’s truck on several occasions.

Puckett was seen around 3:30 p.m. the afternoon of the murder at the same house from which David Griffis was collecting pine straw. Puckett’s blue 4-wheel drive truck was alsoseen passing the Griffis’ residence at approximately 4:41 p.m.

Puckett’s truck was recovered the next night in a wooded area in Perry County. On October 16, 1995, Puckett was apprehended near his mother’s home in Perry County. At the time of his arrest, Puckett nervously commented to his mother that “[t]his is a lot of law enforcement for somebody who just committed a burglary.” A duffle bag containing various items including a pair of coveralls was recovered from Puckett at the time of his arrest.

5.Puckett did not deny being in the trailer at the time of the murder, but testified that he witnessed David Griffis murder his wife. He indicated that he had originally planned only to burglarize the house in order to find money to pay his truck note. He stated that the idea to burglarize the house just popped into his head at the time he went by the Griffis’ house. Puckett testified that he parked his truck in a vacant lot beside the Griffis’ trailer and put his coveralls on. Puckett saw Rhonda’s car at the trailer, but proceeded to the door anyway and knocked. Puckett said that Rhonda let him in and they began to talk. Puckett said that he saw the stick (State’s Exhibit No. 3) lying on the living room floor. He stated that he and Rhonda began kissing and he then began acting out his sexual fantasy of undressing a woman while he remained fully clothed. He said that Rhonda then saw her mother approaching the trailer, grabbed her clothes and ran into the bedroom, and told Puckett to get rid of her mother. Puckett said heran into the dining room area and had picked up the stick and decided to scare Mrs. Hatten away with the club. Puckett further stated that after Mrs. Hatten fled with the children, David accused Rhonda of sleeping with Puckett and began hitting her with the stick that David took from Puckett. After beating his wife, David struggled to keep Puckett in the trailer, but Puckett was able to escape while David was calling 911. At trial, Puckett indicated the whole incident took four or five minutes. Puckett said he hid in the woods for two days because he was afraid of David.

Update : march 20, source :http://www.wlbt.com

Advocacy group calls for clemency in Puckett execution

watch the video click  here

Update : march 19,2012 sourcehttp://www.wtok.com

Group Protests Executions
Jackson, Miss.
A group that opposes the death penalty protested two executions scheduled in Mississippi this week.

Thousands of people have signed an online petition seeking to block the execution of death row inmate, Larry Matthew Puckett.

He is scheduled to die by lethal injection Tuesday at 6 p.m.

Puckett was convicted of sexually assaulting and killing his former boss’ wife when he was 18 years old.

His lawyers petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court last week to block the execution.

A group opposed to capital punishment spoke out Monday at the state capitol.

Mississippians Educating for Smart Justice want Gov. Phil Bryant to grant clemency to Puckett, as well as condemned killer, William Mitchell, who is also scheduled for execution this week.

“Neither of these men, William Mitchell or Matt Puckett, have had a fair trial,” said attorney Jim Craig. “Neither of them have had a real appeal. It’s time to quit hiding behind this fraud and accept the fact that our system is deeply flawed. And these two cases prove it.”

As of Monday, there were nearly 4500 electronic signatures on a petition called ‘Save Matt Puckett: stop an innocent man from being executed.’

Update : march, 15, 2012 source  : http://www.sunherald.com

JACKSON — A Mississippi prison inmate has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block his execution Tuesday based on the argument that his lawyers didn’t do a good job and prosecutors discriminated against blacks during jury selection.

Larry Matthew Puckett is scheduled to receive a lethal injection for the 1995 sexual assault and beating death of Rhonda Hatten Griffis of Forrest County. His lawyers filed the request Wednesday to block the execution.

March, 16,2012 : Jamie Arpin-Ricci  Author & pastor, Little Flowers Community talks about matthew’s innocence

[…]In less than a week another friend of mine, Matt, is going to be dead — killed as surely and finally as the other two. I will not see his death, but because the setting of his death is determined (and by some, celebrated) I am already haunted by the images of him dying. It has not happened yet, but I feel as powerless to prevent his death as I am with the others.

You see, my friend Matthew Puckett is being executed by the state of Mississippi on Tuesday, March 20. Matthew has been tried and convicted of a brutal murder. Doubtless there are those who believe that deserves this end and will take great joy when his sentence is carried out. I am not one of those people.

While I know many of my fellow Christians do not agree with me on this point, my faith makes it impossible to condone capital punishment. I will not attempt to argue that position here, for there isn’t the space nor is it the primary point. Whether you believe in the death penalty or not, what I hope we can agree on is that, should we use this form of punishment, we had better be damn sure there is no question of their guilt. As I look at Matt’s case, there are simply far too many uncertainties to make such a sentence acceptable.

I believe that Matthew Puckett is innocent. For those not convinced, I hope that you will examine his case and recognize that he was not given the kind of justice our society boasts as being the right of every person. Given that reality, I ask that you consider signing this petition to save Matt’s life and/or contacting Mississippi’s governor, Phil Bryant, and ask for a stay. Allow Matt at least the chance to live his life, even if behind bars.

read full article

Supreme Court of United States

No. 11-6550      *** CAPITAL CASE ***
Larry Matthew Puckett, Petitioner
Christopher B. Epps, Commissioner, Mississippi Department of Corrections
Docketed: September 26, 2011
Lower Ct: United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  Case Nos.: (09-70032)
  Decision Date: May 19, 2011
  Rehearing Denied: June 22, 2011
~~~Date~~~ ~~~~~~~Proceedings  and  Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Sep 19 2011 Petition for a writ of certiorari and motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis filed. (Response due October 26, 2011)
Nov 2 2011 Order extending time to file response to petition to and including November 28, 2011.
Nov 28 2011 Order further extending time to file response to petition to and including December 1, 2011.
Dec 8 2011 Brief of respondent Christopher B. Epps, Commissioner, Mississippi Department of Corrections in opposition filed.
Dec 9 2011 Order extending time to file response to petition to and including December 8, 2011.
Dec 14 2011 Reply of petitioner Larry Matthew Puckett filed.
Dec 22 2011 DISTRIBUTED for Conference of January 13, 2012.
Jan 4 2012 Record Requested .
Jan 13 2012 Record received from the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit (one envelope).
Jan 23 2012 Record received from United States District Court Southern District of Mississippi (two boxes).
Jan 26 2012 DISTRIBUTED for Conference of February 17, 2012.
Feb 21 2012 Petition DENIED.

~~Name~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~Address~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~Phone~~~
Attorneys for Petitioner:
Keir Michael Weyble Cornell Law School (607) 255-3805
    Counsel of Record 103 Myron Taylor Hall
Ithaca, NY  14853
Party name: Larry Matthew Puckett
Sheryl Bey 4268 I-55 North (601) 351-2400
Meadowbrook Office Park (39211)
P. O. Box 14167
Jackson, MS  39236
Party name: Larry Matthew Puckett
Attorneys for Respondent:
Marvin L. White Jr. Assistant Attorney General (601) 359-3680
    Counsel of Record 450 High Street
P.O. Box 220
Jackson, MS  39205
Party name: Christopher B. Epps, Commissioner, Mississippi Department of Corrections

Supreme Court, state case 

On November 5, 2009, Puckett filed an appeal with the Fifth Circuit over the denial of his habeas petition in Federal District Court.

On May 19, 2011, the Fifth Circuit affirmed Puckett’s death sentence.