Adam Kelly Ward - TX - 3/22/16 - Executed

Started by heidi salazar, November 22, 2009, 09:20:23 PM

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heidi salazar

November 22, 2009, 09:20:23 PM Last Edit: February 13, 2010, 04:46:01 AM by Jeff1857
Wrongful death suit filed in Commerce murder

By BRAD KELLAR
Herald-Banner Staff

The family of a slain Commerce code enforcement officer has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the City of Commerce.

Donavan Wayne and Marissa Elizabeth Walker, the surviving children of Michael "Pee Wee" Walker, along with their grandfather Richard A. Walker, filed the suit in the 354th District Court Friday. The City of Commerce had not responded to the suit as of Wednesday afternoon and Commerce City Attorney Jim McLeroy could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

Adam Ward received the death penalty following his conviction on a charge of capital murder in connection with Michael Walker's shooting death on June 13, 2005. Walker was taking photos of code violations at the home where the Wards lived on Caddo Street when he and Adam Ward had an altercation which ended with Walker being shot multiple times.

The lawsuit alleged City of Commerce officials knew Adam Ward possessed a gun and had used it to threaten neighbors on previous occasions.

The city was also alleged in the suit during the 10 years leading up to the shooting to have frequently threatened Ralph Ward, Adam Ward's father, with action concerning reported code violations at the residence, with the regulations never being enforced.

"During that period, the city established what can only be described as a policy of harassment and intimidation toward Ralph Ward," the suit claimed. "Despite the City of Commerce's knowledge of the potentially dangerous situation into which it was sending Michael Walker, it did not warn him of the danger. Neither did it take steps to protect him, prevent confrontation or avoid injury."

The suit argues that the City of Commerce now regularly provides police protection for utility meter-readers when they visit the residence where Ralph Ward still resides because, according to the suit, " ... the city still considers Ralph Ward as dangerous; the city has even paid over time to the police to help protect other city-hall employees from Ralph Ward."

The suit seeks unspecified amounts of actual and exemplary damages. No hearing dates concerning the suit are currently scheduled.

In June 2007, Richard A. Walker filed a wrongful death suit against both Adam and Ralph Ward, claiming they were negligent in causing the events which led to Walker's murder. The suit claimed that both Ralph and Adam Ward incited the conflict that day and that Ralph Ward "intentionally and/or negligently provoked and provided direction" to his son prior to the shooting.

In April of last year, Walker and Ralph Ward issued a statement noting a compromise had been reached and that the suit had been settled.

No one was found liable for Michael Walker's death through the settlement of the suit. Rather, according to the agreement, "this settlement is a compromise of a doubtful and disputed claim" and Ralph Ward's payments to Walker's children, "is not to be construed as an admission of responsibility."

Under the terms of the settlement, the Wards agreed to pay each of Michael Walker's children a little more than $26,000 in a one-time annuity, with Donavan Walker receiving $8,125 per year for four years starting Nov. 5, 2012 and Marissa Walker receiving $9,355 per year for four years beginning April 15, 2015.

The Wards also agreed to reimburse the Walker family for Michael Walker's funeral expenses and for attorney's fees.

The Walker family won millions in May of this year, after Adam Ward, who currently is on Texas' death row, was found liable in the earlier suit. Judge Richard A. Beacom granted a default judgment to the Walkers, as Adam Ward had never responded to the suit. Beacom awarded the family $1 million in actual damages, $5 million in exemplary damages, as well as $15,000 in attorney's fees and interest.

http://www.heraldbanner.com/local/local_story_324012831.html

heidi salazar

Convicted killer of Texas officer loses appeal

(AP) -- HOUSTON (AP) - A man condemned for gunning down a housing code enforcement officer in north Texas in a trash dispute has lost an appeal of his conviction and death sentence.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on Wednesday upheld the case of 27-year-old Adam Kelly Ward. Ward was sent to death row for the 2005 fatal shooting of Michael "Pee Wee" Walker in Commerce, about 60 miles northeast of Dallas.

Evidence showed Ward opened fire after the 44-year-old officer took pictures of his home as part of a code violation investigation. Walker was following up on complaints of trash in the yard.

The inmate's appeal said the trial court judge improperly limited evidence of Ward's mental impairment and questioned the legality of the death penalty in Texas.

http://www.connectamarillo.com/news/news_story.aspx?id=414366

TDCJDR

This one DEFINITELY makes me do a "Happy Dance!" ;D

tpgisgay

More information.

Prosecutors told jurors in the 354th District Court Monday that Adam Kelly Ward gunned down Commerce Code Enforcement Officer Michael "Pee Wee" Walker in cold blood two years ago.

"He shot him again, and again, and again," said District Attorney F. Duncan Thomas. "Adam Ward did not stop shooting until the clip was empty."

Ward's lead defense counsel, Dennis Davis, said Ward was the product of a "severely disfunctional family" and claimed he was only playing a role in an ongoing conflict between his father and the Commerce city government.

"Adam Ward, through his father Ralph Ward, had been at war with the City of Commerce since before he was born," Davis told the jury during opening arguments in Ward's capital murder trial. "On that fateful morning ... the first footsoldier of that war, Michael Walker, died."

Meanwhile, Walker's father, Dick Walker, recalled how while serving with the Commerce Emergency Corps he arrived on the scene to find his son near death.

"I dropped to my knees and I told him his dad was here and would take care of him," the elder Walker said. "I told him I loved him and that he would be all right. He wasn't."

Ward, 24, is facing the potential of death by lethal injection, if he is convicted of capital murder. Ward remains in custody at the Hunt County Jail in lieu of $2 million bond. He has pleaded not guilty. The trial is expected to take about three weeks.

Walker was working as a code enforcement officer for the City of Commerce when shortly after 10 a.m. on June 13, 2005, he was taking photos of alleged code violations at the home where Ward lived on Caddo Street.

Thomas said Ward objected and the two argued, with Ward spraying Walker with a hose. Walker called 911 on his cell phone while Ward allegedly ran into the house, grabbed a .45 caliber pistol and two loaded clips. Thomas said Ward returned to the scene and began chasing Walker, shooting him as many as eight times as they ran. Thomas said Ward was attempting to reload the gun before Ralph Ward took the weapon away.

"Michael 'Pee Wee' Walker was brutally murdered, execution-style, simply because he was doing his job," Thomas said.

Davis characterized the Ward household as one in which the family believed that the City of Commerce, the Commerce Independent School District and the Commerce Police Department were all conspiring against them, and that years of paranoia had reached a boiling point.

"What Michael Walker did not know is that he was walking into a war that day," Davis said, noting that there had been several recommendations made to Ward's parents that their son should receive treatment, advice which Davis said was ignored.

"But for the conspirators in his life, he'd be fine, says his dad and mom," Davis said.

Dick Walker serves as the volunteer chief of the Commerce Emergency Corps and as an emergency medical technician. He said the initial call came in that a police officer had been shot and that he didn't realize until his unit was enroute to the location that the city's only code enforcement officer, his son, was the victim.

Walker said he arrived to see several police cars in the street.

"I started hollering out, 'Is it my son? Is it my son?', and no one would answer," he said.

He and the other emergency personnel did their best, Walker said, but there was no chance.

"They were devastating wounds, devastating," Walker said. "I knew I was going to lose my son when I first saw him."

Prosecutors said there were several witnesses to the shooting. One of them, Joseph Hamilton, also testified Monday. Hamilton said he was setting up a metal building down the street from the scene when he began hearing gunshots. He said he watched Walker being chased by Ward, with Walker first trying to get into his truck and drive away, and then getting out of the vehicle.

"He just kept getting shot until he finally died there on the sidewalk," Hamilton said.

http://www.commercejournal.com/local/local_story_163123234.html

Grinning Grim Reaper

Execution Date Set for Commerce Man


7 hours ago News, Paris News

A Commerce man condemned for the slaying of a Code Enforcement Officer 10 years ago has received an execution date. Adam Kelly Ward is scheduled to be put to death by lethal injection on March 22.  Testimony in the trial showed Ward shot Michael "Pee Wee" Walker 9 times with semi-automatic handgun.

www.easttexasradio.com
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

turboprinz

I apologize for my not perfect English. Hopefully you understand what I mean. If not - ask me. I will try to explain.

time2prtee

An interesting look from the other side!

http://theravingqueen.blogspot.com/2013/01/there-is-so-much-wrong-with-this-story.html

There Is So Much Wrong With This Story, Darlings!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                         For all the grizzly crime stuff I often watch on Investigation Discovery, girls, few stories truly get to me, in an upsetting way.  Well, last night's story on "Fatal Encounters" did, because it was a tragedy that could have been avoided in so many ways, and at its center was a young man who desperately needed help, but never really got it.

                                           As with many of these programs, sometimes the background information is sketchy.  Adam Ward, from early childhood, was in serious need of help; he was violent and disruptive in the classroom, from the elementary stage.  Though I am not a mental health profession, it is my opinion, from what was presented, that Adam was/is a paranoid schizophrenic, whose parents jointly made the mistake of protecting him through parental isolation and love, rather than the health care he needed.

                                             And I had to wonder about the Wards' marriage.  Dr. Ralph Ward, Adam's father, was a Ph.D in Industrial Mechanics, from whom Adam inherited an affinity for same.  Something went awry with the parents, because, by the time Adam is a young man, the parents are separated (but live close by), with the understanding that the mother will support the family, while the father stays home, and cares for Adam.  By the time Adam is 22, when things happened, he was slight, but, nevertheless, a full grown man, capable of violent and adult rages.  All of which Dr. Ward took responsibility for placating. But he also, unintentionally, but with consequences, had a hand in fueling some of Adam's  issues; the father felt negatively about the City Council, Code Board, School District, and did not hesitate to voice all this in front of Adam!!!!!!!!  And guess what, darlings??????????  Adam picked up on it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                                             Now, just six blocks away lived another family, the Walkers. Consisting of Michael, father of two children, whose marriage had fallen apart. He and the kids moved in with Michael's father, who not only ran a funeral home, but served on the town's (Commerce, Texas) rescue squad. Son Michael had worked in construction for awhile, had no interest in being a mortician, so ended up becoming the town's Code Enforcement Officer.

                                               The Wards, father and son, were antique and decoration collectors, and a pile of debris had amassed on their front porch and on the lawn.  Neighbors had complained and called the authorities, and warnings were issued, but never heeded, because of Dr. Ward's blatantly anti-authoritarian stance. Which he passed on to his son.

                                                  On June 13, 2005, things exploded.  Michael Walker, in his official capacity, went to settle things with the Wards, not knowing what he was walking into.  Adam was out, washing the car, when Walker pulled up, parking his vehicle the wrong way. When Adam tried to correct him, and Walker, not understanding why he was making such a fuss, having no ongoing knowledge of Adam's problems, this caused things to escalate, to the point where Adam became hostile and violent, his father ran outdoors to cool things down, but Adam went in the house to get his gun, as he genuinely felt (with his mental disturbances) he and his father were being threatened.  This led to a confrontation between Adam and Michael Walker, with Michael being shot several times, knocked down, and then at point blank range. By the time Michael's father, on assignment for the squad, showed up, it was too late.  So both fathers lost their sons---Mr. Walker to death, and Dr. Ward to the prison system.

                                                      What I want to know is--why didn't Adam's parents act constructively???  If they had gotten help for their child when younger, or put on meds, or treatment, or something, perhaps Michael Walker would be alive today.  As is, I think Dr. Ward should have been charged, along with his son, but that wasn't how it played out.

                                                          Such a waste of lives lost, where there did not need to be.  Not only does society need to start re-examining its treatment of the mentally ill, so do parents and/or kinfolk of those who are mentally ill.  They need to take some responsibility for their loved ones who just may not be able to handle themselves in society.

                                                             It was a sobering hour, girls!  Nowhere near as fun as "Deadly Women!!!!!!!!!"
"Indeed, the decision that capital punishment may be the appropriate sanction in extreme cases is an expression of the community's belief that certain crimes are themselves so grievous an affront to humanity that the only adequate response may be the penalty of death."  SCOTUS

Peace and Comfort to all Victims and Families

Grinning Grim Reaper

Ward execution date nearing


Brad Kellar Herald-Banner Staff
 
Last minute appeals continue to be filed, although an execution date is set in less than two weeks for a Commerce man, convicted of capital murder for the killing of one of the city's code enforcement officers almost 11 years ago.

Adam Kelly Ward is set to die on the evening of March 22.

Last fall, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal of Ward's 2007 conviction and sentence to death by lethal injection for the 2005 death of Michael "Pee Wee" Walker.

In January 2015 the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals also rejected Ward's formal appeal. Ward's attorneys had argued Ward's trial counsel was deficient. The court also denied a writ of habeas corpus filed in Ward's behalf in 2014.

In the writ, Ward contended his conviction and death penalty sentence were unconstitutional because he received ineffective assistance of trial counsel, was not tried by an impartial jury, and is severely mentally ill.

The court reviewed the case and in a 63-page opinion denied the writ in a unanimous ruling, also noting Ward failed to make a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right. Ward's defense counsel then filed the formal appeal with the court.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, in a February 2010 ruling, also denied an appeal raised by Ward.

Walker was working as a code enforcement officer for the City of Commerce and shortly after 10 a.m. on June 13, 2005 he was taking photos of alleged code violations at the home where Ward lived on Caddo Street. The two engaged in a verbal altercation, which ended when Ward shot Walker as many as nine times with a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol.

In order to have been convicted of capital murder, the prosecution had to show Ward knowingly and intentionally either obstructed Walker's ability to do his job or retaliated against Walker for doing his job as a public servant, while in the course of committing the murder.

Defense attorneys attempted to show Ward may have been psychotic and suffering from paranoid delusions at the time of the shooting.

Ward was found mentally competent to stand trial in a separate hearing which occurred even as a jury was being impaneled to consider guilt or innocence on the capital murder charge.

www.heraldbanner.com
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

THE COURT OF CRIMINAL APPEALS OF TEXAS
 

ARTICLE 11.071 APPLICATION FOR WRIT OF HABEAS CORPUS DISMISSED WITH WRITTEN ORDER:

WR-70,651-03 WARD, ADAM KELLY HUNT COUNTY

DISMISSED WITH WRITTEN ORDER - PER CURIAM

MOTION FOR STAY OF EXECUTION DENIED:

WR-70,651-03 WARD, ADAM KELLY HUNT COUNTY
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

Appeals court denies stay of execution for Adam Kelly Ward


 The state's highest criminal appeals court has denied a stay of execution for a Commerce man, who claims he was mentally ill when he shot and killed one of the city's code enforcement officers almost 11 years ago.

 Adam Kelly Ward is set to die on the evening of March 22 and was convicted of capital murder in connection with the 2005 death of Michael "Pee Wee" Walker.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals this week denied a stay of execution for Ward, one of the last appeals which can be filed before Ward faces death by lethal injection.

 The court's ruling: "In his application, applicant makes a single claim that evolving standards of decency should exempt him from execution because he is a severely mentally ill individual. After reviewing his application, we have determined that applicant has failed to meet the dictates of Article 11.071, 5. Accordingly, we dismiss the application as an abuse of the writ without considering the merits of the claim, and we deny his motion to stay the execution."

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, in a February 2010 ruling, also denied an appeal raised by Ward.

 Last fall, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal of Ward's 2007 conviction and sentence to death by lethal injection for the 2005 death of Michael "Pee Wee" Walker.

 In January 2015 the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals also rejected Ward's formal appeal. Ward's attorneys had argued Ward's trial counsel was deficient. The court also denied a writ of habeas corpus filed in Ward's behalf in 2014.

 In the writ, Ward contended his conviction and death penalty sentence were unconstitutional because he received ineffective assistance of trial counsel, was not tried by an impartial jury, and is severely mentally ill.

 The court reviewed the case and in a 63-page opinion denied the writ in a unanimous ruling, also noting Ward failed to make a substantial showing of the denial of a constitutional right. Ward's defense counsel then filed the formal appeal with the court.

 Walker was working as a code enforcement officer for the City of Commerce and shortly after 10 a.m. on June 13, 2005 he was taking photos of alleged code violations at the home where Ward lived on Caddo Street. The two engaged in a verbal altercation, which ended when Ward shot Walker as many as nine times with a .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol.

 In order to have been convicted of capital murder, the prosecution had to show Ward knowingly and intentionally either obstructed Walker's ability to do his job or retaliated against Walker for doing his job as a public servant, while in the course of committing the murder.

 Defense attorneys attempted to show Ward may have been psychotic and suffering from paranoid delusions at the time of the shooting.

 Ward was found mentally competent to stand trial in a separate hearing which occurred even as a jury was being impaneled to consider guilt or innocence on the capital murder charge.

www.heraldbanner.com
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

Media Advisory: Adam Kelly Ward scheduled for execution

Monday, March 21, 2016 - Austin, Texas

Austin - Pursuant to a court order by the 354th District Court of Hunt County, Adam Kelly Ward is scheduled for execution after 6:00 p.m. on March 22, 2016.

In 2007, a Hunt County jury found Ward guilty of murdering Michael Walker, a City of Commerce Code Enforcement Officer.

FACTS OF THE CASE

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit described the facts surrounding Ward's murder of Michael Walker as follows:

Ward was convicted of capital murder for an incident involving a code citation for unsheltered storage that went tragically and horribly wrong.  Ward was living with his father Ralph at the time.  Ward had an unusually close relationship with his father, and, according to expert trial testimony, they suffered from similar shared delusions.  They apparently believed that there was a conspiracy among the governing bodies in the City of Commerce against their family, and that the "Illuminati," an apocryphal secret society of enlightened individuals, essentially controlled the majority of government.  The record indicates that the Ward family hoarded rubbish inside and outside their home, together with an arsenal of guns and ammunition.

The Ward family was cited numerous times for failing to comply with the City of Commerce's housing and zoning codes.  Michael Walker, a City of Commerce Code Enforcement Officer, went to the Ward home to record a continuing violation for unsheltered storage on June 13, 2005.  Wearing his City of Commerce work shirt and driving a marked truck, Walker approached the residence unarmed and carrying only his digital camera.  When Walker arrived, Ward was washing his car in the driveway.

After Walker walked the perimeter of the property taking pictures, Walker and Ward began to argue.  Ward's father came outside and attempted to calm the men down.  Ward then sprayed Walker with water from the hose that he was using to wash his car.  Walker then used his cell phone to call his office to request officer assistance.  When Ward's father noticed that Ward was no longer outside, he advised Walker that it might be "best if he left the property."  Ward's father then ran to look for Ward, believing that Ward kept a gun in his room.  Ward's father did not warn Walker about this.  Walker remained near the property waiting in the back of his truck for officer assistance to arrive.

Before Ward's father could intervene, Ward ran out of the house toward Walker and fired a .45 caliber pistol at him.  Despite Walker's attempts to escape, Ward shot Walker several times.  After Walker fell, Ward shot him again at close range.  Walker sustained nine gunshot wounds in total and died.

Ward confessed to killing Walker shortly thereafter, explaining that he believed "the City" was after his family.  He believed that Walker and the former Code Enforcement Director had threatened to tear down the family home.  He claimed that he feared for his life because Walker had "threatened to call the cops," and to believe that, if the cops showed up to arrest him, he would probably end up dead.  Ward believed this because he claimed to have been beaten up by the local police previously--though, there was no evidence to substantiate this claim.

PRIOR CRIMINAL HISTORY

During the penalty phase of Ward's trial, jurors learned that Ward had previously pled guilty to committing an assault on a public servant.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY

On August 26, 2005, a Hunt County grand jury indicted Ward for murdering Michael Walker.

On June 15, 2007, a Hunt County jury convicted Ward of capital murder.  After a separate punishment proceeding, the same jury sentenced Ward to death on June 26, 2007.

On February 10, 2010, Ward's conviction and sentence were affirmed by the Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas on direct appeal.  Ward did not appeal the state court's decision to the Supreme Court of the United States.

Ward filed an application for habeas corpus relief, which was denied by the Court of Criminal Appeals on October 6, 2010.

On October 6, 2011, Ward filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division.  The federal court denied Ward's petition on March 6, 2014.

On January 22, 2015, the Fifth Circuit rejected Ward's appeal and affirmed the district court's denial of habeas corpus relief.

Ward filed a petition for a writ of certiorari in the Supreme Court, which was denied on October 5, 2015.

On November 2, 2015, the 354th state district court issued an order setting Ward's execution date for March 22, 2016.

On March 3, 2016, Ward filed in state court a subsequent application for habeas corpus relief and a motion for a stay of execution.  The application and motion remain pending.

www.texasattorneygeneral.gov
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

No. 15-8590      *** CAPITAL CASE ***   

Title: Adam Kelly Ward, Petitioner v. Texas
 
 
Docketed: March 17, 2016


~~~Date~~~  ~~~~~~~Proceedings  and  Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Mar 17 2016 Petition for writ of habeas corpus and motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis filed. 
Mar 18 2016 Brief of respondent in opposition filed. 
 
 

No. 15-8589      *** CAPITAL CASE ***   

Title: Adam Kelly Ward, Petitioner v. Texas
 
Docketed: March 17, 2016
Lower Ct: Court of Criminal Appeals of Texas

Case Nos.: (WR-70,651-03)


~~~Date~~~  ~~~~~~~Proceedings  and  Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Mar 17 2016 Petition for a writ of certiorari and motion for leave to proceed in forma pauperis filed.
Mar 17 2016 Brief of respondent Texas in opposition filed. 
 
www.supremecourt.gov
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

North Texas man set for execution


MICHAEL GRACZYK, Associated Press 11:41 a.m. MDT March 21, 2016

LIVINGSTON, Texas (AP) -- Attorneys for a death row inmate from North Texas who shot to death a city employee who was taking photos of junk piled up at his family's property say their client is delusional and should not be executed because of his mental illness.

Adam Ward insists he was defending himself 11 years ago when he killed code enforcement officer Michael Walker outside the Ward family home in Commerce, about 65 miles northeast of Dallas. Ward, 33, is set for execution Tuesday evening in Huntsville.

"This man charged up and tried to attack me," Ward said recently from a visiting cage outside death row. "Long story short, my case is a case of self-defense, but there are cops there in that town that have tampered with evidence, they have removed evidence, they have added evidence to the scene."

Ward's lead trial attorney and court documents describe him as delusional.

In a videotaped statement to police following his arrest, Ward said he believed Commerce officials long conspired against him and his father, described in court filings as a hoarder who had been in conflict with the city for years. Evidence showed the Ward family had been cited numerous times for violating housing and zoning codes.

Ward's attorneys have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to halt the execution, renewing arguments that he is severely mentally ill and contending that his execution would be unconstitutional because of evolving sentiment against executing the mentally ill. The high court has ruled that mentally impaired people may not be executed. State lawyers say courts have nevertheless not exempted mentally ill offenders from the death penalty.

Evidence of Ward's delusions, paranoia and bipolar disorder was presented at his 2007 trial and resurfaced in earlier unsuccessful appeals. The Supreme Court last October refused to review Ward's case.

Witnesses said Walker was taking pictures from the perimeter of the Ward property on June 13, 2005, when they got into an argument. Ward, who had been washing his car, sprayed the city worker with water from a hose.

Dennis Davis, Ward's trial lawyer, says the code officer told Ward that he was calling for back up, and in Ward's mind this meant police were on their way to kill him.

"He had no idea that was the exact wrong thing to say to that person," Davis recalled last week.

Walker pulled out his cellphone, made the call and waited near the back of his truck. Ward went inside the house, emerged with his gun and started firing.

Walker, 44, was shot nine times.

"Whenever you've been harassed, you take preventative measures if you have to," Ward told The Associated Press from prison, repeating testimony he gave at his trial that he believed Walker was armed. "I was matching force with force, when this man had pulled a gun on me and he pointed it at me and was fixing to shoot me, which is self-defense."

No evidence showed Walker carried a gun and Ward's trial lawyers never raised the issue.

"When I stepped in front of the jury, I said, 'I'm not going to be so callous and look you in the face and say my client didn't kill this man,'" Davis said. "He killed him but you have to understand why. These delusions he has caused the situation."

Jurors rejected defense arguments for a life sentence.

Ward would be the ninth convicted killer in the U.S. to receive lethal injection this year and the fifth in Texas, the nation's most active death penalty state.

www.elpasotimes.com
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

Supreme Court weighs whether to spare Texas man from execution


The Associated Press

Published: March 22, 2016, 9:03 am

HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) -- The U.S. Supreme Court was considering whether a Texas man who killed a city worker in 2005 should be spared from a lethal injection, as his lawyers argue that a ban on executing mentally impaired prisoners should be extended to him.

Adam Ward's attorneys say he's delusional and should not be put to death because of his mental illness. His execution is set for Tuesday evening and would be the fifth this year in Texas and ninth nationally.

Ward, 33, insists he was defending himself when he killed code enforcement officer Michael Walker, who was taking photos of junk piled outside the Ward family home in Commerce, about 65 miles northeast of Dallas.

"Only time any shots were fired on my behalf was when I was matching force with force," Ward told The Associated Press last month from a visiting cage outside death row. "I wish it never happened but it did, and I have to live with what it is."

Evidence showed the 44-year-old Walker had a camera and cellphone but no weapon.

In a videotaped statement to police following his arrest, Ward said he believed Commerce officials long conspired against him and his father, described in court filings as a hoarder who had been in conflict with the city for years. Evidence showed the Ward family had been cited repeatedly for violating housing and zoning codes.

In their appeal to the high court, Ward's attorneys renewed arguments that he is mentally ill and contended his execution would be unconstitutional because of evolving sentiment against executing the mentally ill.

The justices have ruled that mentally impaired people, generally those with an IQ below 70, may not be executed. However, the court has said mentally ill prisoners may be executed if they understand they are about to be put to death and why they face the punishment.

State attorneys, who said evidence showed Ward's IQ as high as 123, said the late appeal did not raise a new issue, meaning it was improper and without merit. They also disputed claims of changing attitudes about executing the mentally ill.

Evidence of Ward's delusions, paranoia and bipolar disorder was presented at his 2007 trial and resurfaced in earlier unsuccessful appeals. The Supreme Court last October refused to review Ward's case.

"It's frustrating, tormenting, it's depressing," Dick Walker, the father of the man killed, said Monday. "I believe in appeals. I really do. ... It shouldn't drag on for almost 11 years."

Witnesses said Michael Walker was taking photos of the Ward property on June 13, 2005, when he and Ward got into an argument.

Walker told Ward he was calling for assistance. Ward thought that meant police were on their way to kill him, Ward's lead trial attorney, Dennis Davis, said last week.

"Mr. Walker walked into a hornet's nest and didn't know it," Davis said.

Walker made the call and waited near the back of his truck. Ward went inside the house, emerged with a .45-caliber pistol and started firing. Walker was shot nine times.

"I think the only thing he was there for was harassment," Ward said from prison.

Dick Walker, an emergency medical technician when the shooting happened, was the first medic to arrive at the Ward property. He said he "had to intubate my own son on scene to save his life."

He said he's spent years "getting rid of my anger" and in the last year prayed to forgive Ward for the slaying. Still, he believes the punishment is justified.

"I do want him to get the sentence he was given by the jury, and he definitely deserves it," said Dick Walker, who planned to witness Ward's execution.

www.wate.com
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

Grinning Grim Reaper

Execution Watch: Adam Kelly Ward, Texas


Posted on March 20, 2016

by Mark R. Execution Watch Editor


March 22 brings us our second execution of the month, this time that of Adam Ward (no, not either of the actors in the old Batman series; that was Adam West and Burt Ward).  Commerce isn't the place you would expect a capital murder to occur; usually the police only have to deal with out of control frat parties at Texas A&M--Commerce. Unfortunately, underneath the general calmness of daily life in a college town, the simmering of a pot about to blow was taking place.

The City of Commerce and the Ward family (Adam and his father Ralph) had been in a long-standing dispute over numerous code violations on the Ward property. The Wards claimed that the City was engaged in a conspiracy against them; the City countered that the property resembled something you would see on the TV series Hoarders.

pee wee walkerBut the feud between the parties would turn tragic shortly after 10 AM local time on June 13, 2005, when Code Enforcement Officer Michael "Pee Wee" Walker would go to the Ward property to take pictures of still more code violations. Walker would be met with multiple rounds of gunfire from Adam (before Ralph managed to get the gun away from Adam). In another tragic twist, the first responder at the scene was none other than Walker's father Dick, who would watch his son die in his arms.

As Walker was a member of the Commerce Police Department, Ward would be charged with capital murder (murder of a peace officer and known to be such by the defendant). In Texas, that's usually the fastest way to get a death sentence, and in June 2007 that would be the punishment handed down by the jury.

Ralph Ward would later enter into a settlement with Walker's family, agreeing (without admitting fault) to pay the children $26,000 each plus the costs of Walker's funeral and attorney's fees. The City would later provide police protection to any city employee (even meter readers) going to the Ward property. (Walker's father would later sue the City, on behalf of himself and the children, claiming that the City knew of the dangers but did nothing to protect Walker; I have no information on the outcome of that suit.)

All of Ward's appeals have been DENIED; however, numerous appeals have been filed claiming he is mentally ill (bi-polar disorder) and therefore should not be executed. I know someone with bi-polar and she absolutely rejects any and all conspiracy theories. There are many sad stories in this case. Ralph Ward's conspiracy-fueled rants led to him having to pay thousands of dollars to Officer Walker's family--and he will have to see his son die before him. Dick Walker (who has managed to forgive Adam) had to see his own son die in his arms. Officer Walker's children have grown up without their father. The City had to spend more taxpayer money to provide police protection for city employees who had to visit the Ward property--police who could have been working to prevent or solve other crimes.

And Adam Ward--only 22 when he fired the fatal shots--will die at 33, way before his time. But he could have chosen to reject the rantings of an unstable parent--he didn't, though, and sometime after 6PM Huntsville time he will have to pay for his failure to choose wisely.

www.nukegingrich.com
Vengence is mine saith the Lord...who are we to question the instruments used to carry it out?

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