Mike DeWine on July 31, Warrant vacated on June 24, by Ohio Supreme Court. District Court for the Middle District of Florida until December 30, to provide newly appointed habeas corpus counsel time to investigate and present potential claims for relief.
Stay subject to appeal. Mike DeWine on September 20, and execution rescheduled for January 13, Legally premature warrant. Mike DeWine on October 30, and execution rescheduled for July 16, Mike DeWine on October 30, and execution rescheduled for September 16, Tim Jones, Jr.
Stanley T. Dawud E. James Tench. Warrant withdrawn. Rescheduled for May 14, by Gov.
Laid to Rest in Huntsville
Resentenced to life without parole on May 22, , by agreement between the defense and prosecutors. Stay granted by the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on October 22, based on defects in the issuance and service of the death warrant. Ray Jefferson Cromartie. Stay granted by the Georgia Supreme Court to afford the court time to address issues raised in an already pending appeal.
Stay granted on October 23, by the U. Reprive granted by Gov. Rescheduled for December 9, by Gov.
Resentenced to life on August 30, While Christian and Muslim chaplains were available, no Buddhist priest was. Prison officials allowed Murphy to visit with his spiritual adviser for about 40 minutes Thursday afternoon. Murphy was among the inmates who escaped from a South Texas prison in December and then committed numerous robberies, including the one in which they shot year-old Irving police Officer Aubrey Hawkins 11 times, killing him.
Hawkins, who had been with the Irving police force about 14 months, had just finished Christmas Eve dinner with his family when he responded to the call about the robbery at a sporting goods store and was ambushed. The escaped inmates were arrested a month later in Colorado, ending a six-week manhunt.
One of them killed himself as officers closed in and the other six were convicted of killing Hawkins and sentenced to death. Murphy would have been the fifth to be executed. The sixth inmate, Randy Halprin, has not been given an execution date. Murphy would have been the fourth inmate put to death this year in the U. In February, the Supreme Court rejected a request from a Muslim death row inmate in Alabama to have his Islamic spiritual adviser be present in the execution chamber.
Dominique Ray, who was executed, also argued his religious rights were violated because Alabama allows a Christian chaplain employed by the prison to be in the execution chamber. Murphy was convicted under Texas' law of parties, which holds a person criminally responsible for the actions of another if they are engaged in a conspiracy.
I ask Paula whether she's ever afraid here, and I feel surprised when she shakes her head no. As we drive, I think back to when Paula moved to Huntsville nearly a year ago: her white knuckles gripping the steering wheel, the rearview mirror framing her face, now tan past the point of sunburn. Eventually she wants to be a psychologist in a maximum-security prison—"I like the mystery," she explains, simply, when asked why—and I wonder where her curiosity comes from, what drew her here from our Midwest suburb.
Tourists, of course, come here to look, and to that end they often end up at the Texas Prison Museum, another squat, redbrick building just off I Paula parks the car and we walk inside, where Jim Willett, director and former warden of the Walls, greets us. For a man who has presided over 89 executions, he's shorter and gentler than I'd expected, with clear blue eyes and a balding head ringed with white hair. Willett was warden during the death chamber's busiest three years to , and he's happier now to be working for the museum.
Last year, he says, the museum had more than 30, visitors, from Texans who wanted to learn more about their own culture to Europeans curious about the death penalty.
List of Texas state prisons - Wikipedia
Ex-inmates sometimes drop in after being released, wanting one last look at what they're about to leave behind. Willett guides me through some of his favorite exhibits: the pistol that Bonnie Parker had in her lap when she was killed; a scale model of a Walls cell, where visitors can pose for pictures; and, near the front, a few pieces of furniture crafted by inmates, available to the public for special order until the s.
The gift shop also sells the sorts of souvenirs you can find at any attraction worth seeing in America: TDCJ patches, "Death Row" baseball caps, and T-shirts. Another design features "Ole Sparky"—the museum's pet name for the retired electric chair that sent men to their deaths in Texas—and the phrase "Riding the Thunderbolt. A handwritten note boasts that the shirt was used as a prop in The Twilight Saga: Eclipse. Willett's eyes brighten as we approach the exhibit for the Texas Prison Rodeo. Running from to , the "Wildest Show Behind Bars" was one of the most popular sporting events in the state for many years, drawing crowds of thousands to Huntsville every weekend in October.
When not performing in the rodeo, inmates could spend their time sitting in booths, selling crafts and prizes for a small profit. As the rodeo and the museum demonstrate, Huntsville has never been ashamed of its prisons; they're actually something of an asset. At Mr. Hamburger, you can choose from the Professor, Warden, or Killer burger.
Breaking News Emails
Mock escapes are often staged at prisons on the edge of town, and the Chamber of Commerce even used "Escape to Huntsville" as its tourism slogan before scrapping it in the 90s. I've even seen it in the death chamber.
I ask Willett what he thinks of Huntsville's sense of humor. I see his point after encountering some of the museum's more gruesome exhibits: tubing and straps from lethal injections; contraband like shanks, monkey knots, and arm blades; a three-foot-long leather switch once used to punish inmates. In the middle of the museum, Ole Sparky looms in a replica death chamber. Nearby is a photo of Captain Joe Byrd, who started pulling the switch in A group of tourists form a circle around Ole Sparky, murmuring to one another and snapping photos.
Willett and I watch in silence until I have to turn away. I wrinkle my nose, and he chuckles: "The people here—it's just not part of their lives. He pauses, and when he speaks again his soft voice is even softer. Bo, a corrections officer at Eastham Unit, on the edge of town, is the type of man who makes me skittish, an amalgam of every Texas-prison-guard stereotype rattling around my head: I am immediately nervous when I spot him getting out of his truck, tall and solid in cowboy boots and a ten-gallon hat.
Last updated on November 7, 12222
He cups my hands in his sun-spotted ones, fixing me with a searching, blue-eyed stare. We take a table near the back of the Starbucks, and Bo asks whether he can sit facing the door: "Just makin' sure there's no threat," he explains, settling slowly into his chair. With so many inmates in town, he's always on duty—glancing around, watching his back.
He asks me what I want to talk about, and I riffle through my notes, suddenly at a loss. I feel out of my element here: a young graduate student from Iowa, where the biggest threats are floods and tornadoes, or those petty crimes of college towns—"Found a cooked pig, apple and all, sitting outside the door," a recent entry in our police log reports.
In front of me is a notebook full of questions, but none of them ask what I am embarrassed to ask, what I really want to know: What's it like living with all that fear? Bo speaks mostly in anecdotes and stories—conniving inmates, dirty bosses, prison fights. He tells me about drug bribes and gang wars, about homemade shanks and crack pipes.
He tells me about his own anger problems growing up, about foster homes and juvenile detention, about his reputation as a young hotheaded bouncer in Houston before signing on at the prison. He tells me about being surrounded in the Walls yard one day by a group of inmates looking to fight, about the 30 men from his dorm who came to his defense with smuggled weapons. A man of his word," Bo tells me, his eyes bright with pride as I write in my notebook. It is important to him that I know this. It is important to him that his story has a moral. Bo wants to make it clear he's not doing this job for the reasons most people are.
But Bo is different.