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Topics - Jeff1857

1
Scheduled Executions / Timothy Hoffner - OH - 05/29/2019
September 23, 2010, 04:59:41 PM
The 6th Circuit Denied a COA for Hoffner in today's Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

On 9/22/93, Hoffner and his accomplice, Archie Dixon, murdered their roommate, 22-year-old Christopher Hammer in a park in Toledo. Hoffner and Dixon planned to kill Mr. Hammer to assume his identity and collect the anticipated insurance proceeds that Mr. Hammer would receive from an automobile accident. Hoffner and Dixon repeatedly beat Mr. Hammer, tied him up, took him into the woods and buried him alive. Hoffner and Dixon stole $11 in cash from Mr.
Hammer's wallet, his driver's license, his Social Security card, his birth certificate and his car. Hoffner and Dixon confessed to police, and Hoffner showed police where they buried Mr. Hammer alive. Dixon also received a death sentence.


Opinion is here:

http://www.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/10a0311p-06.pdf
2
Bonnell was Denied Cert in today's US Supremes Orders.

Facts of the Crime:

On 11/28/86, Bonnell murdered 23-year-old Robert Bunner in his Bridge Avenue apartment in Cleveland. Bonnell
entered the apartment without permission, shot Mr. Bunner twice at close range and repeatedly struck him in the face
after he had fallen to the floor. The murder was witnessed by Mr. Bunner's two roommates.
3
I came across Mathis and this is another case that has dragged through the system on a Mental Retardation claim. The Mathis execution was scheduled for April 20, 2005. The sentence was stayed on April 18, 2005 for retardation claim reasons. The 5th Circuit granted a subsequent writ of federal habeas corpus on 4/2/07.

Opinion for the grant is here:

http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/pub/06/06-20806-CV0.wpd.pdf


Facts of the Case:

Milton Mathis was sentenced to death for the murder of Travis Brown III, 24, and Daniel Hibbard, 31. The two men were shot to death in their home in Houston, Texas. Mathis was 19 at the time. The victims were shot in the head with a .45 calibre pistol. Police believed the motive for the shootings was robbery.

On December 15, 1998, at approximately 8:00 or 8:30 a.m., a woman and her 15-year old daughter went to the home of a man named Chris. Chris rented rooms in his home to Brown and Hibbard. Travis Brown and Milton Mathis were in Travis's room. While the woman, her daughter and Hibbard sat in Chris's room, Chris went into the kitchen. Shortly thereafter, Chris heard gunshots from Travis's room and turned to see Mathis exiting the room with a gun in his hand. Mathis claimed that Travis had just shot himself. Chris told Mathis to put the gun down, however Mathis ordered Chris and the other three back into Chris's room where he walked up to the girl and shot her in the head, leaving her alive but paralyzed from the neck down. Mathis then shot Daniel Hibbard in the head, killing him.

Mathis was subsequently tried by a jury and convicted of capital murder. The jury then returned answers to special issues submitted under the Texas Criminal Code, which required imposition of the death penalty. On September 21, 1999, the trial court entered the judgment and sentence of death. On February 13, 2002, the Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the conviction.
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I have seen that the 5th heard the case on 1/27/10 and a decision is pending. I just can't see why it takes 5 yrs to determine if this scumbag is retarded or not. Hopefully he has been found not to be retarded in the lower courts and will receive an X date.


4

TCCA Denied a Writ of Habeas Corpus in today's TCCA Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

On September 6, 2000, in Madison County, Texas, Holiday killed his stepdaughters, ages seven and five and his one-year-old natural daughter, by burning their home.

Opinion is here:

http://www.cca.courts.state.tx.us/OPINIONS/HTMLOPINIONINFO.ASP?OPINIONID=19641

Here:

http://www.cca.courts.state.tx.us/OPINIONS/HTMLOPINIONINFO.ASP?OPINIONID=19642

and Here:

http://www.cca.courts.state.tx.us/OPINIONS/HTMLOPINIONINFO.ASP?OPINIONID=19643
5
Webb was Denied Cert in today's US Supreme Court Orders/Opinions.

Facts pf the Crime:

On 11/21/90, Webb murdered his 3-year-old son, Michael Patrick Webb, at their home in Goshen Township. Webb planned to kill his wife and children so that he could be with his mistress and collect insurance money. Webb poured gasoline in the bedrooms, while his family slept, and set the house on fire. Michael died from smoke inhalation, but the other family members escaped or were rescued by firefighters.



6th Circuit Denial from 11/5/09 is here:

http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data2/circs/6th/064606p.pdf
6
The FL Supremes Denied Post Conviction Relief for Lambrix in today's Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

On the evening of 02/05/83, Cary Michael Lambrix and his roommate, Frances Smith, met Clarence Moore (AKA: Lawrence Lamberson) and Aleisha Bryant at a tavern and then took them back to their trailer to eat.  Lambrix first took Moore outside. Twenty minutes later he asked for Bryant to come outside.  After 45 minutes, Lambrix returned to the trailer alone with a bloody shirt and tire iron in his hand.  He informed Smith that he had killed both Moore and Bryant.  He killed Moore by hitting him in the head and killed Bryant by strangulation. Smith then helped Lambrix clean up, bury the bodies and throw the bloody shirt and tire iron in to a nearby stream. On 02/08/83, Smith was arrested on an unrelated charge.  On 02/10/83, he informed the police about the two buried bodies.  The police investigation led to the discovery of the bodies, Lambrix's bloody shirt and the tire iron.  The medical examination of the bodies confirmed Lambrix's
statements regarding the incident.  Sentenced to Death 3/22/84

Opinion is here:

http://www.floridasupremecourt.org/decisions/2010/sc08-64.pdf
7
CLEVELAND - A Cleveland man who robbed a Lorain drug store and shot a woman dead on the floor of a Cleveland laundromat last year was convicted following a two-week trial in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.

Jeremiah Jackson, 29, could receive the death penalty when sentenced Monday.

Although his trial was held in Cleveland, Jackson's robbery spree stretched to Sandusky and included 11 victims.

During the last known robbery, Jackson entered the Soap Opera Laundry on West 25th Street in Cleveland on June 18 and held a gun to 38-year-old Tracy Pickryl, demanding money. When she attempted to give him $6 in coins, he refused, yanked jewelry off her and fatally shot her in the head, according to prosecutors.

He then turned toward a 27-year-old female employee and received $75, to which Jackson responded by firing a shot at her head. She ducked and was not hit.

He was arrested two days later.

Police believe the robbery spree began June 2 when Jackson and 31-year-old Maurice Harrison, also of Cleveland, entered a 40-year-old man's home on East 54th Street in Cleveland and refused to let him leave while they searched his belongings and shot him in the stomach. The victim was able to escape through a window.

On June 15, the pair was joined by 25-year-old Katrina Dickerson and robbed a laundromat on Fleet Avenue in Cleveland, according to prosecutors. Just 30 minutes later, the three robbed Hobo Joe's Bar on East 71st Street with the help of James Dixon, 25.

Two days later, all four robbed Brickhouse Bar & Grill on Harvard Avenue at 1:30 a.m. then drove to Sandusky, where they robbed a Howard Johnson Express Inn at 5 a.m. They stole $161 while pointing a gun at a 20-year-old female employee's head and then tied her feet and hands with duct tape.

Less than an hour later, the four struck again, this time in Lorain at the Walgreens at 5411 Leavitt Road. During the robbery they put a 61-year-old customer from LaGrange in a headlock with a gun to his head and took his car keys, cell phone and wallet before forcing him into a storage closet. They also threw a drink bottle at an employee and searched two other employees at the store before fleeing.

Jackson was convicted of all 40 charges leveled against him, including aggravated murder, attempted murder, aggravated robbery, kidnapping and felonious assault.

His accomplices have all been sentenced, Dickerson to eight years, Harrison to 21 years and Dixon to 24 years in prison.

http://chronicle.northcoastnow.com/2010/04/02/man-guilty-in-deadly-crime-spree/
8
Sneed was Denied a COA by the 6th Circuit in today's Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

On 11/19/84, Sneed and an accomplice, Chevette Brown, murdered 26-year-old Herbert Rowan in Canton. Mr. Rowan agreed to give Sneed and Brown a ride when they approached his car. Sneed pulled a gun and demanded money. When Mr. Rowan refused, Sneed shot him through the temple. Sneed also ordered Brown to shoot Mr. Rowan in the back of the head.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/10a0088p-06.pdf
9
Tercero was Denied by the TCCA in his claim of that he was actually under the age of 18 when he committed the murder. The TCCA granted him relief in the trial courts on this claim in October 2008.

Facts of the Crime:

On March 31, 1997, Tercero and one co-defendant entered a cleaners and shot and killed a man in the presence of his three-year-old daughter. An unknown amount of cash was taken from the business and Tercero and his co-defendant fled the scene. Tercero further fled to Florida, while his co-defendant fled to Mexico.

Opinion is here:

http://www.cca.courts.state.tx.us/OPINIONS/HTMLOPINIONINFO.ASP?OPINIONID=19385
10
In a 6th Circuit Opinion issued today, the 6th Circuit upheld a fed judge decision to overturn the conviction of Montgomery.

Facts of the Crime:

On 3/8/86, Montgomery murdered 20-year-old Debra Ogle and 19-year-old Cynthia Tincher. Ms. Ogle and Ms. Tincher were roommates who knew Montgomery. Montgomery asked Ms. Ogle for a ride in her car, took her to a wooded area and shot her three times, point-blank, in the forehead. Montgomery returned to Ms. Ogle's apartment in her car, left with Ms. Tincher in Ms. Tincher's car, had her pull over to the side of the road and shot her at close range. Montgomery received a death sentence for the aggravated murder of Ms. Ogle.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/09a0348p-06.pdf
11
Stays of Execution / Duane Edward Buck - TX - Stayed
September 26, 2009, 02:18:37 AM
Buck was Denied a COA by the 5th Circuit in today's Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

Duane Buck was convicted of the July 1995 shooting deaths of his ex-girlfriend Debra
Gardner and another person in Houston. An early-morning quarrel between Buck and
Gardner led Buck to return to Gardner's home several hours later with two rifles. He forced
his way into the home and began shooting indiscriminately. The first person Buck saw inside the home was his own sister, who he shot in the chest. He then shot and killed Gardner's friend, Kenneth Butler. Buck chased Gardner out the back door and into the middle of the street as her young daughter begged him not to shoot her mother. Buck shot Gardner and left her bleeding in the street.
Witnesses saw Buck laughing as he stood over her body and heard him say, "The bitch, she
deserved it." Buck was taken into custody at the scene. His sister survived the shooting.
Sentenced to Death 6/97.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/unpub/06/06-70035.0.wpd.pdf

12
Tyler was Denied a COA by the 6th Circuit on the basis of Cooey II (LI challenge) in today's 6th Circuit Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

On 3/12/83, Tyler murdered 74-year-old Sander Leach in Cleveland. Mr. Leach sold produce from his van and was the target of an armed robbery, planned by Tyler and his accomplice, Leroy Head. With Head acting as the lookout, Tyler lured Mr. Leach into the back of the van, robbed him and shot him twice. Tyler later admitted to Head and another friend that he murdered Mr. Leach.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/09a0655n-06.pdf

13
Battaglia was Denied a Writ of Habeas Corpus in the TCCA orders/opinions of 23 Sep 09.

Facts of the Crime:

On May 12, 2001, Battaglia shot and killed his two daughters, ages six and nine. The mother of the children was on the phone with the older daughter at the time of the offense and heard the
gunshots.
Victims: Faith Battaglia (9), Liberty Battaglia (6)
Sentenced to Death 4/30/02.


Opinion is here:

http://www.cca.courts.state.tx.us/OPINIONS/HTMLOPINIONINFO.ASP?OPINIONID=18787
14
Simon was granted a COA for ineffective assistance of counsel in today's 5th Circuit Orders/Opinions.

Facts of the Crime:

Was sentenced in Quitman County in July 1990 for the Feb. 2, 1990, murders of the four-member Carl Parker family. Fellow death row inmate Anthony Carr was an accomplice.
Victims: Carl and Bobbie Joe Parker,and children, Charlotte and Gregory Parker.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/unpub/08/08-70011.0.wpd.pdf
15
DENVER -- A man on Oklahoma's death row for the beating death of a Tulsa convenience store clerk will get a chance to argue for a reduced sentence based on claims he suffers from schizophrenia.

The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that Oklahoma state courts did not properly consider evidence indicating 33-year-old Michael Lee Wilson suffers hallucinations and other mental health problems.

Wilson was one of four men convicted in the 1995 death of Richard Yost at a QuikTrip store that the district attorney called "as barbaric a crime" as he'd seen in the city.

Darwin Demond Brown, 32, was executed for the crime in January. One other defendant is awaiting execution, while another is serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole.


http://newsok.com/oklahoma-death-row-inmate-gets-chance-to-appeal/article/3396205?custom_click=headlines_widget

Opinon is here:

http://www.ca10.uscourts.gov/opinions/06/06-5179.pdf
16
Ward was Denied a COA by the 8th Circuit in today's Orders/Opinions:

Facts of the Crime:

Convicted of the 1989 capital murder of eighteen-year-old Rebecca Doss and sentenced to death by lethal injection.  Doss was a clerk at a Jackpot Inc. conveniance store working the overnight shift.  Ward was arrested when a police officer had stopped because the store
was open but he could not see a clerk inside. He stopped Ward after seeing him walking
away from the restrooms toward a motorcycle and arrested him after finding the body.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca8.uscourts.gov/opndir/09/08/054381P.pdf
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Note: Ward has been sentenced to Death 3 seperate times for this offense.
17



Clarence Carter admits he beat and stomped Johnny Allen to death 21 years ago while the two were inmates at the Hamilton County Justice Center.

But Carter says Allen died during a fight that got out of control, not because he intended to kill him.

Carter's lawyers told a federal appeals court Wednesday that evidence discovered after Carter's conviction supports his claim and could save him from the death sentence he received two decades ago.

They say a key witness changed his story years after Carter's murder trial when he told investigators he didn't really see who started the fight in 1988, despite testifying earlier that he had seen Carter "sucker punch" Allen and then beat him for more than 20 minutes.

The distinction is important, they say, because prosecutors used the testimony to show Carter intended to kill Allen with "prior calculation and design," which made him eligible for the death penalty.

"No reasonable juror would have convicted Carter without evidence of a sucker punch," said Joe Wilhelm, one of Carter's lawyers.

But the panel of three judges from the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals was skeptical about whether the witness really changed his story and, if he did, whether it would have made any difference to jurors.

They said the witness, a fellow inmate named Calvin Steele, claimed years later that he "couldn't remember" who started the fight and that he had testified "truthfully" during the trial.

The judges also noted that other evidence from the case could have given jurors reason to believe Carter had acted with prior calculation. That evidence includes testimony from several witnesses about how Carter beat, kicked and punched Allen repeatedly and, on two occasions, took a break to mop blood off his shoes.

"When he stops twice to wipe blood off his shoes, they might find that to be prior calculation," said Judge Danny Boggs.

Thomas Madden, a lawyer with the Ohio Attorney General's office, said Steele may have attempted to change his story in 1994 after some of Carter's relatives threatened him in prison. When charged with perjury by prosecutors, Steele backed off those comments and said he stood by his trial testimony.

Madden said Steele's subsequent statements about being unable to remember who started the fight have more to do with the passage of six years since the trial than with a genuine recantation of his testimony.

"He can't remember everything about the fight, but he does remember testifying truthfully," Madden said.

Carter is among the longest-serving inmates from Hamilton County on Ohio's Death Row. He was in jail at the time of Allen's death because of a previous, unrelated murder conviction.

The 6th Circuit could rule on Carter's appeal within the next few months.
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Note: Carter had an execution date of July 10, 2007 but it was stayed due to Carter joining Cooey's lawsuit against LI.

Note 2: Carter was Denied a COA by the 6th Circuit dated 10/30/09.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/09a0378p-06.pdf


18
Bartee was Denied a COA in today's 5th Circuit Orders/Opinions

Facts of the Crime:

On August 15, 1996, in San Antonio, Bartee murdered 37-year-old man by using a nine-millimeter pistol to fatally shoot David Cook in the head and neck. Bartee then took Cook's motorcycle and
fled the scene.
Bartee was on parole for two counts of aggravated rape when he committed the murders.
Sentenced to Death 9/98.

Opinion is here:

http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/unpub/08/08-70035.0.wpd.pdf
19
HOUSTON -- A man condemned for the fatal shooting of an 18-year-old woman whose remains were found west of San Antonio almost two years after she vanished lost an appeal of his conviction and death sentence at the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on Wednesday.

Ramiro Gonzales, 26, had received two life sentences for the abduction and rape of another woman in Bandera County and was awaiting transfer to prison when he told authorities in October 2002 he knew where they could find Bridget Townsend. She was reported missing from her Bandera County home in January 2001.

He led them to her skeletal remains in a remote area of his family's ranch in adjacent Medina County and confessed to robbing, raping and killing the woman.

Lawyers for Gonzales had raised 10 error points from his 2006 trial in Hondo, about 40 miles west of San Antonio, including claims that his confession was not sufficiently corroborated by independent evidence. They also challenged testimony from a forensic psychiatrist who told jurors Gonzales would be a continuing threat, one of the questions a jury must decide when considering a death sentence.

Other challenges were raised about the propriety of instructions the trial judge gave to the jury.

One appeals court judge, Paul Womack, dissented from the court majority saying he believed there should have been more research about the reliability of predicting behavior "before we accept an opinion that a capital murderer will be dangerous even in prison."

Another judge, Cheryl Johnson, joined him in his dissent. The other seven judges, however, agreed the psychiatrist's testimony was proper under existing law.

Gonzales, a seventh-grade dropout who built fences and also worked as a welder, led authorities to a remote hillside where they found a human skull and other bones that had been scattered by animals. They also found jewelry and clothing belonging to Townsend.

Gonzales first told deputies he let Mexican Mafia members use the ranch after they told him they needed a spot to dispose a body. Then he changed his story to say he was there when others killed Townsend.

He subsequently told a Texas Ranger details that were consistent with the evidence gathered during the investigation, that he went to his drug supplier's house to steal cocaine because he knew the man's girlfriend, Townsend, was there alone at the time. He said he abducted Townsend after taking some money and drugs from the house and after she tried to call her boyfriend, drove her to his family's ranch, retrieved a high-caliber deer rifle and drove her to the spot where her remains were found.

He said the frightened woman offered him money, drugs or sex if he wouldn't hurt her. He had sex with her, then shot her and went home. Her boyfriend later called police to report her missing.

At his trial, the woman Gonzales had been convicted of abducting and raping told jurors she believed she also would have been killed if she hadn't been able to escape from a cabin where he left her bound with tape.

His trial lawyers blamed his behavior on childhood neglect, drugs and sexual abuse.

Gonzales does not have an execution date. He still has federal appeals he can pursue.

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ap/tx/6484664.html

20
Supreme Court reinstates Terrell death sentence


The Georgia Supreme Court has reinstated a death sentence given to Brian Keith Terrell, convicted of killing a 70-year-old Newton County man in 1992.

The court's ruling Monday was unanimous. It reversed a lower-court judge's ruling that Terrell's death sentence should be set aside because his lawyers provided ineffective assistance of counsel.

According to prosecutors, John Watson, who was a friend of Terrell's mother, found out on June 20, 1992, that Terrell had stolen 10 of his checks and began using them. Watson told Terrell to repay him repay him a significant portion of the stolen money within 2 days.

According to testimony, on the due day, Terrell shot Watson 4 times, and later beat him on the face and head.

(source: Columbus Enquirer)