Category: ‘Death Penalty’

Mississippi may execute an innocent woman this week.

March 24, 2014 Posted by suefairview

Michelle_Byrom_courtesy_MDOC_t670Here we go again:

From the Jackson Free Press:

“I sit in my room for a good 1 1/2-2 hours, and dad comes in my room, and goes off on me, calling me bastard, nogood, mistake, and telling me I’m inconciderate [sic] and just care about my self, and he slaps me, then goes back to his room.

“As I sat on my bed, tears of rage flowing, remembering my childhood my anger kept building and building, and I went to my car, got the 9mm, and walked to his room, peeked in, and he was asleep. I walked about 2 steps in the door, and screamed, and shut my eyes, when I heard him move, I started firing. When I opened my eyes again, I freaked! I grabbed what casings I saw, and threw them into the bushes, grabbed the gun, and went to town.”

Edward Byrom Jr. confessed to murdering his father, Edward Byrom Sr., on June 4, 1999, in a letter to his mother, excerpted above. One of at least four known confessions—there are two additional letters and a statement to his court-appointed psychologist—it might have been evidence to convict “Junior” for murder.

Instead, Tishomingo County deputies arrested Junior as part of a murder-for-hire conspiracy. Junior’s friend Joey Gillis was the shooter, they said, and his mother, Michelle Byrom, was the mastermind.

Junior led police to the murder weapon, though. And only Junior had gunpowder residue on his hands.

He made a deal. Junior testified against his mother in return for a reduced sentence.

The prosecutor’s theory, based on Junior’s statements (which police subsequently lost) was that Michelle planned to pay Gillis $15,000 for the hit from the proceeds of Edward Sr.’s life insurance.

Read the rest of the article here.

This poor woman. Michele was abused by her father and ran away from home at age 15, right into the arms of her abusive husband. Three years later, she gave birth to Junior. Continuing what her stepfather began, Edward Sr. verbally and physically abused Michelle. He forced her to have sex with other men, which he videotaped. Michelle now suffers from borderline personality disorder, depression, alcoholism and Muenchausen syndrome, a serious mental illness that caused her to ingest rat poison to make herself ill; as well as lupus, anemia, chronic pain from a dog attack and numerous surgeries, fibromyalgia and severe hypertension. She was on at least nine medications to treat her ailments. She had double pneumonia and was in the hospital at the time of the murder. She has been through numerous appeals, but the confessions and letters from her son admitting that he committed the crime have not be sumitted to the court first, because her attorneys’ were trying their first capital case and made a misjudgement, thinking they could bring up the evidence on appeal. But this appeal was denied. Unfortunately, on the stand, her son Junior denied everything.

So, the execution is set for March 27th. If she is executed, this will really be a stain on Governor Phil Bryant‘s record and a serious mark against the death penalty, as this is an innocent person who is going to be executed. And seemingly, nobody cares!

Glenn Ford, Black Man Wrongfully Convicted By White Jury, Freed After Nearly 3 Decades On Death Row

March 12, 2014 Posted by suefairview

Glenn Ford  From the HuffPo:

By Kathy Finn

NEW ORLEANS, March 11 (Reuters) – A Louisiana man who has spent nearly three decades on death row walked free on Tuesday, after prosecutors asked a judge to set aside his first-degree murder conviction and death sentence, citing new evidence in the case that exonerated him.

Read the rest of the article here.

In Mr. Ford’s case, the prosecution suppressed evidence that proved that two other men were the culprits. According to an unidentified informant, one of these persons admitted to the crime. Also, last year evidence came to light that provided Mr. Ford with a solid alibi. All of this just goes to show why the death penalty can be wrongly applied and thus should not exist. The death penalty relies on a flawed system and is a permanent solution for which there is no legal remedy; it cannot be undone. Had Mr. Ford been executed, it would have been a horribly gross miscarriage of justice. As it is, he has served 30 years of his life for nothing. That can never be paid back to him. But, at least he is alive.

U.S. reviewing 27 death penalty convictions for FBI forensic testimony errors

July 18, 2013 Posted by suefairview

BIG NEWS on the death penalty front with the break through of 27 death penalty cases being challenged for forensic errors by the FBI. This could be a huge step for anti-death penalty groups progress in certain states, but that remains to be seen.

Read the full article here.

Stephen Colbert on the Death Penalty

March 5, 2013 Posted by suefairview

One year ago…

September 21, 2012 Posted by suefairview