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TX: Hank Skinner - New Hell Hole News - #34
Mon Jan 23, 2012 15:18
New Hell Hole News - #34
January 10, 2012
Step 1 Grievance filed 12-27-11
Who did you talk to: Capt. Patrick Dickens.
What was his response? "This is out of my hands. It's the major's call."
State your grievance:
Retaliation by Virgil McMullen, Major. Since 10-17-11 I've filed numerous complaints (on McMullen's illegal
actions, conditions & policy). Answering none, McMullen siccs the skakedown team on me who tell me that
McMullen has a hard on for me and has vowed revenge. On 12-13-11 I filed complaints via letter on McMullen.
On 12-14-11 Prisoners Cobb 467 and Wilkens 533 assaulted staff. McMullen falsely accused me of a vague
"conspiracy" involvement using an inappropriate I-203 process, punishing me with no due process by total
deprivation of all property, leaving me naked for eight days in a feces-contaminated cell despite the fact that both
Cobb and Wilkens loudly proclaimed to the major on the run that I had NO involvement in their actions whatsoever.
Held incommunicado and denied any measure of life's basic necessities my general and legal mail was interdicted
and confiscated after opening and has not been returned to me along with my legal material. (Dictionary and
encyclopedia), fan and Vatican rosary. I was subjected to sleep deprivation by incessant cell "searches" every two
(2) hours, gas purge fans sucking freezing cold air into my cell intermittently, 30 minute interval door beating
"verbal response" checks and lights locked on 24/7. Subjected to these actions and conditions intended as torture I
was left naked in a freezing cold cell without even a roll of toilet paper or a bar of soap. When defecating I was
forced to clean my anus with my hands and water, then use my hands to eat food loaf, on which I was improperly
placed for an imagined offense. Pulled out of my cell naked and paraded naked every two (2) hours before
(sometimes female) officers, during strip searches ordered to put my hands/fingers in my mouth and pull out my
The back wall of my cell is an outside wall and is freezing, my steel bunk anchored to it. Unable, with no mattress or with no mattress or
bedding, to lie down and sleep on the freezing steel bunk, with temperatures in the 30's I was forced to constantly
walk back and forth in the cell to try to maintain my body warmth until after six (6) days I collapsed from
exhaustion. When officers could not rouse me from my fugue-like stupor they threatened to gas me and turned on
the gas purge fans intermittently all night to "freeze that bitch out and wake him up!"
Placed handcuffed (behind my back) in the shower stall and told "this is a use-of-force shower" by Sgt. Mooring.
I was soaked naked with cold water, denied a towel and placed wet and freezing back in my cell. The gas purge fans were
turned on to "blow dry" me when the outside temperature was in the 30's. While Mooring laughed and said "now
that's what I call efficiency!"
New Hell Hole News
September 3rd, 2013
To all my friends and pen pals,
On 7/31, I collapsed in the floor in pain so bad I passed out from it after it blinded me. I had no fever, B.P.
normal. The "nurse" said nothing was wrong with me, that I was faking. I refused to go back to my cell and got
rank, took me to Huntsville Memorial Hospital E.R., cat scan. The result: acute pancreatitis, bad case. Pumped
me full of morphine and raced me to John Sealy Hospital in Galveston at 100 mph.
I stayed in hospital for three weeks, almost died twice. Came back to the unit 08.23 and was denied all meds,
relapsed, almost died again. My B.P. was 85/53 and they'd called in my free-world priest to give me the last rites
and extreme unction. No, I'm not kidding. When I left here I weighed 218, I now weigh 174, lost 44-47 lbs in
28 days, puking up my guts everyday and it smelled dead. Couldn't eat the whole month.
Through a miracle I survived. The miracle did not come from TDCJ/UTMB. I'm starting to eat solid food again and
not puking. This ailment usually kills. My priest's niece died of it. The cause is unknown. You can look at
the facts here: http://www.medicinenet.com/pancreatitis/article.htm read it and you'll understand.
I'm still real shaky and not up to writing y'all my usual epic letters, so y'all write me, ok. Ha/ha. My daughter, I
love you! Laure Kate, got your JPay and card, it kept me going in going in darkness. I'm gone.
Love and more to you all,
Missouri executes Michael A. Taylor for 1989 murder of teenager
By TONY RIZZO
The Kansas City Star
A Kansas City man who kidnapped, raped and killed a Raytown South High School freshman in 1989 was executed by lethal injection early today.
Michael Anthony Taylor, 47, was pronounced dead at 12:10 a.m.
Taylor and co-defendant Roderick Nunley pleaded guilty and were sentenced to death for fatally stabbing 15-year-old Ann Harrison on March 22, 1989, after kidnapping her from in front of her southeast Kansas City home while she waited for the school bus.
In a brief phone conversation with The Kansas City Star just hours before the execution, Taylor said he had written a letter to Ann's parents and that a prison official assured him it would be offered to them. In the letter, Taylor said, he expressed "my sincerest apology and heartfelt remorse."
"I hope that they'll accept it," Taylor said of the letter.
An execution date for Nunley, 48, has not been set.
Wednesday's execution was the fourth carried out in Missouri since late November, when it adopted the use of the sedative pentobarbital to execute prisoners.
It came after a day of intense and multifaceted legal challenges to Taylor's execution in state and federal courts that ended when the U.S. Supreme Court denied Taylor's last request for a stay.
Earlier Tuesday, Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon denied Taylor's request for clemency. After the execution, Nixon released this statement: "Our thoughts and prayers tonight are with Bob and Janel Harrison, and the other members of Ann Harrison's family, as they remember the 15-year-old child they lost to an act of senseless violence."
Friends and members of both the Harrison and Taylor families witnessed the execution. Among the state witnesses was retired Kansas City homicide Sgt. Dave Bernard, who was an investigator on the case.
Taylor's death came a little less than a month short of the 25th anniversary of Ann's killing.
Taylor's family issued a statement Tuesday night:
"The family of Michael Anthony Taylor would like to express their gratitude to all of those who supported Michael over the years. It may be a small victory for the State of Missouri but Michael has won in the end. He has struggled for years with the guilt of not stopping a horrendous crime, and has dedicated much of his time in prison to the memory of Ann Harrison through his work with hospice, tutoring and mentoring inside and outside the prison walls. Those heartfelt accomplishments will accompany him into the gates of Heaven where he will be joined by his family and beloved angel."
Ann's father, Bob Harrison, attended the execution, but did not want to make a statement afterward.
Though he was raised in a two-parent, church-going home, Taylor fell into a pattern of petty crimes and drug use that landed him in trouble.
He and Nunley, who grew up in the same central Kansas City neighborhood, were cruising around in a car they had stolen the day before in Grandview when they randomly chose to drive down Ann's street in the early morning light.
They later told police that they had been binging on crack cocaine that morning. Both ultimately confessed, although each portrayed the other as the aggressor in the attack.
After spotting Ann, one attacker got out of the car, grabbed her and tossed her into the vehicle. She screamed and fought, but they threatened to kill her if she did not stop.
They drove her to the home of Nunley's mother in south Kansas City. They forced her into the basement and bound her hands with wire.
In his confession, Taylor said that they both raped her. His DNA was recovered. There was no physical evidence linking Nunley to the sexual assault, and he has always denied that he raped her.
While she was enduring the assault, her family and friends were beginning the frantic search for Ann, whose books, purse and flute case were left neatly piled on the ground.
After raping her, they debated whether to kill her. Nunley said Taylor insisted on it. Taylor said it was Nunley.
A prosecutor later said that it didn't matter, calling them a "sadistic tag team."
Ann refused when they told her to get in the car trunk. She pleaded with them not to kill her and said her parents would pay them if they let her go. They pretended to go along with that idea and said they were going to drive her to a pay phone to call her parents.
Instead, they got knives from the kitchen and stabbed her to death.
They abandoned the car several blocks away.
That night, Bob and Janel Harrison pleaded on television for their daughter's safe return.
It was not until the next night, about 36 hours after Ann disappeared, that her body was found in the abandoned car.
Three months after she was killed, a tipster led police to Taylor and Nunley.
Seeking to avoid death sentences, both men pleaded guilty and chose to have a judge instead of a jury decide their fate.
After a judge sentenced them to death, allegations were made that the judge had been seen drinking at a downtown restaurant before the sentencing.
That led to new sentencing hearings, which again ended in death sentences.
Since then, both men have mounted numerous appeals in state and federal courts.
In early 2006, Taylor came within hours of being executed before the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted a stay. Taylor eventually lost that appeal, involving the three-drug execution method, and in 2008 the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of that method.
Since then, drug shortages prompted by manufacturers opposed to their products being used to carry out death sentences have forced states to seek alternative chemicals.
That has led to additional legal challenges, including one mounted by Taylor's lawyers over how the drug currently used by Missouri is obtained and manufactured.
Attorneys for the previous three executed inmates in Missouri had also raised those concerns, but the appeals were denied.
Paul Howell Executed for Florida Trooper's Pipe Bomb Death
A drug trafficker who placed a pipe bomb in a gift-wrapped microwave oven in a plot to kill two potential murder witnesses was executed Wednesday for the 1992 death of a Florida highway trooper who became the unintended victim.
Paul Augustus Howell, 48, was pronounced dead at 6:32 p.m. following a lethal injection at the Florida State Prison in Starke, the office of Gov. Rick Scott said in an email.
Howell was condemned for the killing of Florida Highway Patrol Trooper Jimmy Fulford on Feb. 1, 1992, when the package exploded during a traffic stop.
Howell's lawyers had filed an unsuccessful appeal Tuesday to the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that a new drug Florida uses for executions wasn't tested for that purpose. This was the fifth execution in the state using the new drug, midazolam hydrochloride, as part of a three-drug mix.
The Supreme Court rejected Howell's final appeals Wednesday afternoon.
The death of Fulford saved others, giving some comfort to his family as the execution of the man convicted of killing him approached.
Fulford died in February 1992 along Interstate 10 in Jefferson County when a booby-trapped package exploded during a routine traffic stop.
The bomb was intended for a Marianna woman who lived in an apartment complex with her baby. Another woman and other children lived in the next unit over and the bomb was powerful enough that it would have blown out windows, doors and walls if it was detonated in an enclosed area, according to court records.
"I'm sure there would have been a lot more people killed besides her," said Tim Fulford, the trooper's brother. "That is a comfort. He did die saving other people's lives."
The man who built the bomb that killed Fulford is scheduled to die by injection on Wednesday, exactly one year after the original execution date set in a process that has been held up by appeals. The time it's taken for Paul Howell's sentence to be carried out has been painful for Fulford's family, especially having to be reminded of the circumstances as Howell's lawyers successfully delayed the execution the past 12 months, Fulford's brother said.
"It's something our family will never get over. This process is too long," Fulford said. "Closure will never come. The only way that would happen is if my brother walked through the door and we both know that won't happen."
Fulford is remembered as an excellent officer and strong family man. It was his dream to become a trooper when he was growing up in Madison County. He was first assigned to a troop in Bradenton, where he met his wife, Keith Ann. He eventually was assigned to patrol the area where he grew up and the couple was raising a son and a daughter in Monticello when Fulford died. He was 35.
"It was just a dream come true for him and things were working really well," said Madison County Sheriff Ben Stewart, who grew up with Fulford and was serving as a deputy when Fulford died.
Fulford was active in his church, singing in the choir and teaching Sunday school. He liked fishing and hunting and spending time with his family. He was always helping neighbors, Stewart said.
"Jimmy was just a really good guy. He was one of the best officers I've ever known. He was very kind-hearted and he very much believed in enforcing the spirit of the law and not the letter of the law. He just believed in helping people," he said. "Just a strong Christian guy and just a country boy, but he always wanted to be a trooper."
Howell, a native of Jamaica, was a drug trafficker living in Fort Lauderdale when he built the bomb. He was trying to kill two potential witnesses in another drug-related murder. Howell paid Lester Watson to drive a rented car from Fort Lauderdale to deliver the gift-wrapped box that contained a microwave oven with a pipe bomb inside that was set to explode when the door was opened. One of the women had told Howell she needed a microwave oven to heat her baby's formula.
Fulford stopped Watson for speeding in Jefferson County. Watson was driving a car rented in Howell's name and gave Fulford a false name and birthdate. A dispatcher called Howell to ask if Watson had permission to drive the car. Howell said yes, but told the dispatcher he didn't think Watson was leaving Broward County. He didn't mention the bomb in the trunk.
"This was evil intent. It was meant to kill somebody. And they didn't care. These guys had an opportunity once they were arrested, to say 'Look, don't open the thing,'" Stewart said.
Two Jefferson County deputies assisted Fulford by taking Watson and his passenger to the county jail. While they were gone, Fulford opened the package setting off a massive explosion that left a depression in the highway.
"If Jimmy had not intercepted that bomb, a woman and innocent kids would have all been killed and that was the sacrifice that Jimmy made," said Florida Highway Patrol Major Mark Welch.
A state and federal investigation after the death led to and the dismantling of a drug ring based in South Florida and the indictment of 28 people.