Saturday, 26 November 2011

Mississippi Death Row Christmas Card List

None of us like to be forgotten, but truth is many of these men will be this holiday season. I would like to ask you all to please send a card to lift the sports of these men, and to remind them they are not forgotten. 

Inmate Name Inmate Number

Batiste,Bobby L 0000153435

Bell,Frederick 0000081039

Bennett,Devin 00000L4820

Billiot,James 0000008114

Branch,Lawrence 00000L1208

Brawner,J Michael 00000R3430

Brown,Joseph Patri 0000045415

Brown,Sherwood Dwa 0000026754

Brown,Xavier A 0000044781

Byrom,Michelle 00000K4686

Carrothers,Caleb 00000K0375

Carr,Anthony 0000075337

Chamberlain,Lisa Jo 0000122376

Chase,Ricky 0000074170

Conner,Ronnie Lee 0000042219

Crawford,Charles Ray 0000082068

Davis,Jeffery K. 0000079350

Davis,Kenneth 0000064881

Doss,Anthony 0000081638

Flowers,Curtis Giova 00000R2436

Galloway,Leslie 0000130792

Gillett,Roger Lee 0000133700

Goff,Joseph Bishop 0000111487

Goodin,Howard Dean 0000041165

Grayson,Blayde N. 0000037922

Havard,Jeffrey Keith 00000L3955

Hodges,Quintez 00000R6937

Hollie,Erik Wayne 0000157022

Howard,Eddie Lee Jr. 0000030856

Howell,Marlon 00000R7984

Jackson,Henry Curtis 0000025585

Jordan,Kelvin 0000066570

Jordan,Richard G. 0000030990

Keller,Jason Lee 00000M0564

King,Mack Arthur 0000037111

Knox,Steven Michael 00000R9991

Le,Thong 00000L2460

Loden,Thomas 00000K8126

Manning,Willie Jerom 0000071931

Mitchell,William J. 0000031271

Moffett,Eric 00000M1659

Pitchford,Terry 00000117778

Powers,Stephen E. 00000K5020

Puckett,Larry Mathew 0000065781

Ronk,Timothy 0000141817

Russell,Willie 0000042239

Scott,Kevin 00000R6570

Simmons,Gary Carl Jr. 00000R1943

Simon,Robert Jr. 0000046380

Smith Clyde Wendel 0000044932

Spicer,Fred Sanford 00000L5613

Thorson,Roger 0000008836

Turner,Edwin Hart 0000067290

Underwood,Justin 0000055372

Walker,Alan Dale 0000077293

Walker,Derrick Demo 00000L6016

Wilson,William Matthew 0000129500

Mailing address is; 
Inmate name and #
Unit 29 J Bldg.
Parchman, Mississippi 38738

Please remember to put your return address on envelope or they will not receive them.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Mississippi high court to review death row appeals

Joseph Patrick Brown
Joseph Patrick Brown / Courtesy of MDOC
Jeffrey Keller Davis / Courtesy of MDOC

The post-conviction appeal of death row inmate Joseph Patrick Brown has made its way back to the Mississippi Supreme Court.
In 2009, Brown's case was among nine death row post-conviction appeals in which the Supreme Court asked trial judges why they had not ruled – or scheduled hearings.
Brown's claims of ineffective counsel were heard in Adams County Circuit Court in 2004. But no ruling had been issued. The trial judge issued a ruling denying the petition in 2010.
In a post-conviction petition, an inmate argues he has found new evidence – or a possible constitutional issue – that could persuade a court to order a new trial.
Brown's case is among dozens the Supreme Court will consider during its November-December term.
In 1999, the Supreme Court ordered an Adams County judge to determine if Brown was treated fairly when his attorneys decided against pursuing a mental evaluation of their client.
The court said there was merit to Brown's complaint about his attorneys' failure to ask questions about a state mental examination or to pursue an examination themselves.
Brown was convicted and sentenced to death in Adams County in 1994 for the killing of a convenience store clerk in Natchez.
Prosecutors said Brown and his girlfriend were driving around Natchez on Aug. 8, 1992, looking for drugs when they pulled into the Charter Food Store where Martha Day worked.
Brown's girlfriend testified that she saw Day grab her chest and fall after Brown approached the counter. The woman said Brown returned to the car with a cash register and other items.
Police said Day was shot four times and died at the scene.
The Supreme Court also will hear a post-conviction petition from death row inmate Jeffrey Keller Davis. A Greene County judge in 2010 ruled against Davis' petition of ineffective counsel.
Davis was convicted in the robbery and killing of Linda Hillman. She was shot and stabbed in 1991 at her trailer in Greene County. Prosecutors said Davis confessed to the killing and said he needed money to buy drugs in Pascagoula.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Mike Lynzy Sentenced: Having Long Hair, or a Chronic Illness, Can Get You a Longer Jail Term In Rankin County

Honorable Judge William Chapman, sentenced, Mike Lynzy, to a term of 20 years in prison, with 15 to serve, and 5 years probation, under a Manslaughter Best Interest Plea, which admits no guilt.

Judge Chapman, told Mike Lynzy“Because you selfishly stabbed, Dave Knapp, in order to get an ambulance for yourself, you have long hair, Hepatitis C, and have drank and drugged, all of these years, part of this is your punishment for that, and part of it is for protection of society.”

His attorney, Don Leland, said of Mike’s sentence“It broke my heart. I nearly broke down and cried, it was just horrible.”

He went on to say, “His characterization of Mike, is so unlike that boy, and regardless of Mike’s past, It still does not give someone the right to come to your house, and try and kill you. He out weighed Mike by 71 pounds, and was 16 years younger.  I don’t care if you have long hair, are sick, black, white, red, or green, those factors should have nothing to do with your sentence.”

I also spoke with one of Mike’s former co-workers, Wade Hutson, from Morrison Brother’s Music, and ask how long he had know Mike, and what he thinks of him.  He said“I have worked with Mike for about 5 years, and Mike is a great, very kind, guy, we were friends, and you could always count on him to do what he said he was going to do. He has been a true blue friend, I’ve never had a friend better than Mike.  He came to us with glowing recommendations. 

I ask him, when he found out Mike had a felony conviction 30 years ago, if that changed his opinion of him, he said, “Absolutely not, I’ll give you a prime example.  After he was arrested for murder, he was allowed to come back to work the day he got out, so that should tell you how we here at Morrison Brother’s feel about him.”

In addition he said, “I learned more about Mike’s past, as time went on, when he confided things about his life in general.  We all have our skeletons, have made mistakes.”

Mike Lynzy was attacked at his home at 2:00 in the morning, had big globs of his hair pulled out, suffered two fractured ribs, two partially collapsed lungs, had a beer bottle broken over his head, and then ground into his face, requiring over 50 stitches, it felt like his face was falling off, bleeding profusely, his contacts were gouged out, his blood soaked shirt ripped off, and blood was pouring into his eyes, and down his chest, and he feared he would die from blood loss.

 After being attacked twice, he breaks loose, gets inside his home to try and find a cell phone to call 911, (After he has been repeatedly begging for someone to call because he needed an ambulance) can't find it, looks out his door and sees his attacker with his arm around his roommate, thinks he is attacking him, finds a knife laying on the kitchen counter, goes outside and stabs the man once to disable him, and the man dies while both of them are waiting 45 minutes for an ambulance.

Even though, by law, he is protected by the Castle Doctrine, the Pearl Police Department filed murder charges on him, and that charge remains for three years, until one week before court, they up it to habitual offender because of a 30 year old charge the man had when he was a teenager, one a crime he did not participate in.  

This is a man that goes to work, takes care of his family, and has never hurt anyone in his life.  Before trial they give him a competency test, but after giving him the test, take him off the medications that are used to control side effects, that include; seizures, hallucinations, confusion, weight loss, passing blood, and stand him before a trial judge, in that condition.

The man who attacked Mike Lynzy, Dave Knap, has bragged about busting people over the head with beer bottles before, and grinding it into their face, bragged that he has stuck people with a knife, twisted it, then pulled it out, back handed his 4 year old child with his fist, has a long rap sheet, and also left the person he told these things to, with the impression that he has also killed someone. 

He was no angel, and I will leave his fate up to the one who knows the heart of all men, but right now I am concerned with the life of a man that tried to defend himself, his loved ones, and his home.

When I started looking into this case, I was undecided, but after hearing the facts, I would not have been able to convict him of murder or given him a harsh sentence.

What would you do, if someone came to your home at 2:00 in the morning and attacked you like that?

Most voters I have talked to have said, “If he had done that to me, I would have killed him with anything I could have gotten my hands on, regardless of, if I thought he was attacking my roommate, or I felt my life was in danger.”

I don't know what I would do, but if I was continually losing blood, and afraid for my life, and the only way to save myself, was to hurt the person who inflicted my injuries, and was going to let me bleed to death, I would probably do what ever I felt was necessary to preserve my life. That is human nature, and called survival.

Most people, who come in contact with our judicial system, come away feeling something is terribly wrong.

After what I saw in trial, regardless of whether I think Mike is innocent or guilty, the way things were handled in the court room, were a travesty of justice, and I am very angry about the things I witnessed.

People can continue to sit in front of their TV, their computers, their cell phones, and ignore what is going on all around them, or they can join together to stand up for what is right.  If we do not stand up soon, before long there will not be anything left to stand up for.

If you reside in Rankin County, and defend yourself against unlawful attack, you will most surely be charged with murder.

This case was not about the past, it was about the facts, and the judge totally, and prejudicially, ignored the facts in this case.

He also ignored the law, as it pertains to, The Castle Doctrine.

Here is a link to the Castle Doctrine.


MICHAEL LINDSEY Crime Scene Photos

These Photos were taken by the police when they first arrived on the scene but were not discovered by the defense until too late to be of any help to the defense.
Some believe that they were kept out of site to avoid the possibility that having a jury view them might have influenced the outcome of the trial -- which appears to have been decided from the outset.
The "First Responders" took 45 minutes to get there -- by which time the other person had 'bled out" and died.
The dead man was the assailant and had come to Mike's home with the express purpose of starting a fight. 

Under Mississippi's "Stand your ground"  law -- known as the "Castle Doctrine"  Lethal Force is permissable in defense of your own life or the lives of others. The question here would be whether Mike had sufficient reason to fear for his life. Was he in serious danger? You decide!.

16 Year Old Beaten Coerced and Threatened Into Serving 125 Year Sentence

At The Age of (16) Sixteen - Shanta Jones Was Beaten, Coerced and Threatened Into A Guilty Plea Of Armed Robbery,Rape and Kidnapping. He Was Sentenced to 125 Years And Sent To Parchman Penitentiary.
Shanta K. Jones

by Shanta Jones

   Shanta Jones maintains his account of what happened on October 18th 1992, and his version includes the admission of robbery.  Jones however; adamantly deniesraping Susan Whitehead. 

Madison County Mississippi Indictment #1936 - The State of Mississippi vs. Shanta Jones and James Seaton - yields the offense of Kidnapping - Robbery - Use of Deadly Weapon - Rape and Grand Larceny.

The Robbery - In The State of Mississippi - Kmart Parking Lot - Beasley Road - Jackson, Mississippi

Susan Whitehead and her 12 year old daughter were robbed of (four dollars)  $4.00, taken to the ATM and forced to withdraw funds after which Jones admits James Seaton raped Susan Whitehead. The 12 year old was not raped and did not witness her mother being raped. Jones maintains that Seaton raped Whitehead. 

Susan Whitehead is a white woman. Shanta Jones and James Seaton are male Africans in America/Black.  Shanta Jones and James Seaton  were indicted under the same offenses but, Jones' account is that Seaton committed the rape. 

Jones was beaten, threatened and coerced into a guilty plea at the age of 16. After the plea he was shipped off to Parchman Plantation Penitentiary where he remained for 2 years of his 125 year sentence.  Jones has been in prison a total of 19 (nineteen) years.  

Of major concern is the fact that the questionable Dr. Steven Hayne was an Expert witness in this case. Please Note The Innocence's Project's request for revocation of Steven Hayne's medical license.Request to Revoke Dr. Steven Hayne's License

Sunday, 6 November 2011

10 Infamous Cases of Wrongful Execution

There’s no doubt about it – the U.S. criminal justice system is not perfect. And those imperfections become apparent when someone is the innocent victim of the death penalty. Wrongful executions have been happening for hundreds of years, but until the advent of DNA evidence and improved forensics technology, these individuals have remained guilty as charged. Today, DNA evidence has exonerated and released 15 death row inmates since 1992, but only eight inmates have been acknowledged of their possible innocence after execution by the Death Penalty Information Center. Here are 10 infamous cases of wrongful execution that deserve a second look:
  1. Claude Jones: Claude Jones was executed in 2000 for the murder of liquor store owner Allen Hilzendager, in San Jacinto County in 1989. On Nov. 14, 1989, Jones and another man were seen pulling into a liquor store in Point Blank, Texas. One stayed in the car while the other went inside and shot the owner. Witnesses who were standing across the road couldn’t see the killer, but Jones and two other men, Kerry Dixon and Timothy Jordan, were all linked to the murder. Although Jones said he never entered the store, Dixon and Jordan testified that Jones was in fact the shooter and they were both spared the death penalty. The deciding factor and only admissible evidence in Jones’ conviction came down to a strand of hair that was found at the scene of the crime. A forensic expert testified that the hair appeared to have come from Jones, and he was sentenced to death. Forensic technology was underdeveloped during the 1990 trial and it wasn’t able to match Jones’ DNA with the hair sample. Therefore, before his 2000 execution, Jones’ attorneys filed petitions for a stay of execution with a district court and the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals and requested that the hair be submitted for DNA testing that was now possible, but all courts and former Texas Governor George W. Bush denied Jones and he was executed. In an attempt to prove that Texas executed an innocent man, the Innocence Project and theTexas Observer filed a lawsuit in 2007 to obtain the strand of hair and submitted it for DNA testing, which was determined to be the hair of the victim.
  2. Jesse Tafero: Jesse Tafero was executed by electric chair in 1990 for murdering two Florida police officers, Phillip Black and Donald Irwin. The murders occurred on Feb. 20, 1976, when Black and Irwin approached a parked car at a rest stop and found Tafero, his partner Sonia "Sunny" Jacobs, her two children and Walter Rhodes asleep inside. They were ordered to get out of the car when the officers saw a gun lying on the floor inside the car and, according to Rhodes, Tafero proceeded to shoot both officers and took off in their police car. They disposed of the police car and stole a man’s car, but were arrested after being caught in a roadblock. The gun was found in Tafero’s waistband, although it was legally registered to Jacobs. Tafero had been convicted of robbery and had served seven years of a 25-year sentence before being convicted for murder. Tafero and Jacobs claimed that Rhodes was the lone shooter, but Rhodes testified against them in exchange for a lighter sentence. Rhodes later admitted that he was responsible for the killings, but Tafero was still sentenced to death.
  3. Cameron Todd Willingham: Cameron Todd Willingham was executed in 2004 for murdering his three young daughters by intentionally setting fire to the family home in Corsicana, Texas. The arson-murder case fueled much controversy about Willingham’s guilt, which was determined by the case’s primary evidence – the arson investigators’ findings. They determined that the fire was deliberately set with the help of a liquid accelerant due to specific burn patterns, laboratory tests and points of origin. Willingham maintained his innocence and appealed his conviction for years, but was executed at the Texas State Penitentiary in Huntsville on Feb. 16, 2004. In 2009, the Texas Forensic Science Commission panel reevaluated the case and determined that state and local arson investigators used "flawed science" when they labeled the fire as arson. Although advances in fire science and arson investigations have improved since 1991, the year of the fire, experts now believe the Corsicana Fire Department was negligent in their findings. The science commission is still investigating the arson ruling, and if the judge clears Willingham, it would be the first time an official has formally declared a wrongful execution in Texas.
  4. Larry Griffin: Larry Griffin was executed in 1995 for a drive-by shooting that killed 19-year-old drug dealer Quintin Moss in St. Louis. Griffin immediately became a suspect because his older brother Dennis Griffin, another well-known drug dealer, was murdered just six months earlier. Moss was believed to have killed Dennis Griffin. Although there were a number of possible suspects in the murder of Moss, a witness account by a white man named Robert Fitzgerald, who claimed to have seen the shooting, knew the license plate number of the vehicle and could identify the gunman was all it took to have Griffin arrested. Fitzgerald was a convicted felon who had a long history of run-ins with the law, which raised concerns about the legitimacy of his story. During the 1993 hearing, Fitzgerald admitted to being unsure if Griffin was the man in the car after all. There were two key witnesses who wavered and a third person whose testimony could have helped Griffin, but was never contacted by either the defense or prosecution. Griffin continued to proclaim his innocence until his execution. The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund investigated the case after Griffin’s execution and wanted to uncover more witness accounts that could support their claim that Missouri executed an innocent man.
  5. Ruben Cantu: Ruben Cantu was executed in 1993 for the murder-robbery of a San Antonio man at the age of 17. Cantu had no previous convictions, but was pinpointed as a violent murderer who shot one victim nine times, as well as shot the only eyewitness nine times with a rifle, but he lived to testify. Juan Moreno offered his testimony to police and identified Cantu as the shooter, but later recanted, admitting that he said Cantu out of influence and fear of authorities. Although the case had a compelling witness testimony, there was no physical evidence that linked Cantu to the crime. In addition, his co-defendant David Garza, who allegedly committed the murder-robbery with Cantu, remained silent and signed a sworn affidavit allowing his accomplice to be falsely accused. Cantu maintained his innocence until his execution and claimed that he had been framed in this capital murder case.
  6. David Spence: David Spence was executed in 1997 for murdering three teenagers in 1982 in Waco. Spence was convicted of raping, torturing and murdering two 17-year-old girls and murdering an 18-year-old boy. As the original allegations go, Spence was hired by convenience store owner Muneer Deeb to kill one girl and he ended up killing these three teens by mistake. Deeb was charged and sentenced to death, but later received a re-trial and was acquitted. Authoritative sources even had serious doubt about Spence’s guilt. Although there was no clear physical evidence to link Spence to the crime, prosecutors used bite marks that were found on one of the girl’s body and matched it to Spence’s teeth. Even jailhouse witnesses were bribed into snitching on Spence. Despite weak evidential support and jail mate testimonies, Spence was executed.
  7. Carlos De Luna: Carlos De Luna was executed in 1989 for the 1983 stabbing of Wanda Lopez, a Texas convenience store clerk. There were two eyewitnesses who played a key role in the conviction of De Luna. Before the murder-robbery, George Aguirre was filling up at the gas station where the crime occurred, when he saw a man standing outside the store slide a knife with the blade exposed into his pocket and enter. The man asked Aguirre for a ride to a nightclub, but he refused and went inside the store to warn Lopez about the suspicious man. Aguirre left and Lopez called the police to describe the man. As she was on the phone with a dispatcher, the man came back into the store and robbed her. The second witness, Kevan Baker, pulled into the station and heard bangs on the station’s window and saw a man struggling with a woman. As Baker approached the gas station, the murderer threatened him and took off. When police searched the area, they found De Luna not far from the station. He was shirtless and shoeless in a puddle of water and screamed, "Don’t shoot! You got me!" Both Aguirre and Baker confirmed De Luna was the man at the station. Little to no physical evidence was collected at the crime scene, including blood samples and fingerprints that could have helped De Luna. De Luna maintained his innocence and repeated that Carlos Hernandez was the actual killer. Despite Hernandez’s trouble with the law and repeated confessions to the murder, De Luna was executed.
  8. Joseph O’Dell: Joseph O’Dell was executed in 1997 for raping and murdering Helen Schartner. O’Dell was convicted on the basis of blood evidence and a jailhouse snitch. O’Dell represented himself and continued to proclaim his innocence in various unsuccessful appeals to the Virginia Supreme Court, Federal District Court and the Supreme Court. O’Dell requested that the state submit other pieces of evidence for DNA testing, but he was refused. Despite much effort and several appeals, the 4th Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals upheld his conviction and reinstated his death sentence. After his execution, Lori Urs, an anti-death penalty advocate and former wife to O’Dell, sought to further investigate the case and exonerate O’Dell based on mistaken blood matches, court opinions and refusal of DNA testing. However, the last of the DNA evidence from O’Dell’s case was burned in March 2000 and the appeals were laid to rest.
  9. Leo Jones: Leo Jones was executed in 1998 for murdering a police officer in Florida. Although Jones confessed 12 hours after the murder, he said that he was forced to say he did it during hours of intimidating police interrogation, where they threatened his life and made him play Russian roulette. One witness believed that the police department was out to get Jones because he had assaulted an officer once. The same two arresting officers were released from the department shortly after for using violence in other cases. Despite repeated appeals, other potential suspects and witness testimonies in support of Jones’ exoneration, the sentencing stood as is. Jones was also denied another method of execution and was killed by the electric chair.
  10. Timothy Evans: Timothy Evans was sentenced to death by hanging for the murder of his daughter in 1949 at their home in Notting Hill, London. Evans maintained his innocence and repeatedly accused his neighbor, John Christie, of murdering his wife and daughter. The police investigation and physical evidence used to convict Evans was weak. After Evans’ trial and execution, Christie was found to be a serial killer who was responsible for murdering several women at his residence. There were massive campaigns to overturn Evans’ conviction and an official inquiry was conducted 16 years later. It was confirmed that Evans’ daughter had been killed by Christie, and Evans was granted a posthumous pardon. This case of injustice had a strong influence in the UK’s decision to abolish capital punishment.