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Old 14-06-19, 14:46   #1
 
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Movies Most Feared Man On Death Row & Botched Executions -FULL VIDEOS

The Slow Death of the US Death Penalty

America is falling out of love with the needle


The Telegraph / Daily Mirror UK, 14 June 2019


Dan Vasquez used to push the lever on the gas chamber, or the “coughing box,” as it was known on death row. As California's state executioner he stared into the eyes of condemned men while they passed to the next world.

“They try to hold their breath, but it seeps in through the pores,” he told The Sunday Telegraph. “It takes seven seconds. The head rolls forward, and then they flatline.

One told me 'Everyone will dance with the grim reaper'.”


'Racist Cops Framed me For Murder and Left Me on Death Row for 30 Years'

Anthony Ray Hinton said he imagined talking to The Queen and marrying Halle Berry while he struggled to stay sane on Death Row




Anthony Ray Hinton was released in 2015 (Image: Eyevine)



Anthony Ray Hinton still wakes up at 2.45am expecting breakfast to be passed through the bars of his cell.

He still hasn’t got used to showering every day either, or wearing clothes he’s chosen for himself.

And sometimes his stomach knots with dread as he remembers the stench of burning flesh when a fellow prisoner got fried in the electric chair.

Because spending almost 30 years on death row for two murders he didn’t commit has left Anthony Ray, 62, with nightmare memories and deep psychological wounds.

“Death row is another world, a world that is tormented,” he says. “I called it hell. You listen to men crying and hollering at all times of the day and night. And my cell was just 30ft from the death chambers.




Anthony Ray Hinton being lead away by police in 1985 (Image: Alabama Media Group/AL.com)


“I had to smell the flesh of a human being set on fire, hearing the electricity being turned on, seeing the lights blinking then thinking, ‘When is it going to be my day? When are they coming to put me in that chair and strap me down with electricity attached to my brain?’


“If I live to be 120 I’ll never get those memories out of my head. It’s torture.”

With hope of freedom vanishing, he “escaped” the horror of confinement with daily flights of fancy.

“I used my imagination to get away,” he explains. “I went to Italy, I played professional sports, I won Wimbledon five times.

“My favourite getaway was visiting Queen Elizabeth. I felt she had done service to life on that throne. She didn’t ask to be born, to hold that position – it was forced on her. So, I thought about her more often than anyone.”





Anthony Ray Hinton with Oprah Winfrey


He also dreamed up romantic fantasies with two Oscar winners.

“I thought about Halle Berry and Sandra Bullock and what it would be like to marry them. I used my imagination for the passion. I used it so I wouldn’t have to think about the hell I was in.”

Remarkably, Anthony Ray has rebuilt his life after having half of it taken away by
institutional racism and a corrupt criminal justice system.

He has even forgiven his per-secutors and the state officials who have never apologised to him. “I don’t have a choice but to forgive, because I want to be free,” he says.

And now the moving book he wrote about his ordeal is set to be made into a film by Oprah Winfrey.

“It is possible to go through something truly terrible and, if you’re determined, make something good out of it,” he says.





Anthony Ray Hinton's mugshot from 1985...


Anthony Ray, then a 29-year-old warehouseman, was mowing his mum’s lawn when his life was torn apart in July 1985.

Police arrived at the house near Birmingham, Alabama, and arrested him for the murder of fast food bosses John Davidson and Thomas Wayne Vasona.

He had been wrongly identified by the survivor of another armed robbery but, as he had been at work miles away from where the shootings took place, believed the mistake would soon be sorted.However, before he even made it to the police station Anthony Ray realised he was in deep trouble.

“The detective said, ‘I don’t care whether you did or didn’t do it. I’m going to make sure you’re found guilty,” he recalls.


“I knew then it was about race. But I believed in the legal system and thought a lawyer would prove my innocence.

“But when another detective told me the five things that were going to get me convicted everything changed. He said, ‘Number one, we going to convict you because you’re black. Two, a white man is going to say you shot him. Three, you’re going to have a white prosecutor. Four, you’re going to have a white judge and number five, you’re going to have an all-white jury.’


“What he didn’t say at any point was, ‘The evidence is what’s going to convict you,’ or, ‘We have fingerprints,’ or, ‘We have an eyewitness.’

“I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t drink. And I knew then that it was all about getting one more black man off the streets.”

One investigating detective, Doug Acker, had been tried three years earlier for beating suspects and torturing them with cattle prods to coerce confessions.


And Anthony Ray likens the treatment he endured to the lynching of black slaves by white supremacists in America’s southern states in the late 1800s.


“The only thing they couldn’t do was throw a rope and hang me like they once did, but they took my freedom through corrupted criminal procedure.”


When the case reached court prosecutor Bob McGregor, who had a record of illegally excluding African-American jurors from his cases, argued the shots had all been fired from an old handgun found at Anthony Ray’s mother’s home.

His poorly paid, inept defence attorney Sheldon Parhacs then hired a one-eyed ballistics expert and McGregor lacerated his testimony.



Despite an absence of any witnesses or fingerprints, on September 17, 1986, Anthony Ray was sentenced to death in Alabama’s notorious, “Yellow Mama”, electric chair. “When the judge delivered his sentence I lost my eyesight for a split second,” he remembers.

He was sent to solitary confinement at Alabama’s Holman correctional facility – nicknamed the Slaughter Pen and regarded as America’s most dangerous jail.


State-appointed appeal lawyers tried and failed to overturn his conviction. Weeks turned into months, then years.

But as prisoner 2468’s death row neighbours went one by one to their executions,

Anthony Ray vowed to remain strong. “I sat on my bunk and told my mind, ‘This is where we’re going to be for a while. I need you to accept this because, if you don’t, you’re going to hang yourself’. I was on death row, but I was not going to let death row live inside of me.”

Anthony Ray even asked to launch a book club for fellow inmates and soon killers, rapists and Ku Klux Klan members were meeting in the prison library to discuss novels. “I wanted them to have the knowledge I had growing up,” he says.


After 10 years on death row a group fighting racial injustice and inequality, took up the case. Their firearms experts showed the bullets could not have come from his mother’s gun. But it took a further 16 years to prove his innocence.

On April 3, 2015, Jefferson County circuit judge Laura Petro finally overturned the conviction, dropping all charges immediately. “I broke downand cried. I thought about all the things I had lost. I had lost my father..mother. three of my sisters,” he says.

“I had nowhere to live, no clothes, no money. I had nothing but I would prefer to be naked and free than on death row for a crime I didn’t commit.”

His best-selling memoir, The Sun Does Shine, brought him to the attention of Oprah, who bought the film rights to his story after interviewing him on TV.

Anthony Ray, who now campaigns for the abolition of the death penalty, said: “I hope my book and the movie can promote harmony so no one ever has to go through what I went through.”

The Sun Does Shine, by Anthony Ray Hinton, is out now in paperback by Rider Books.



Oprah and author Anthony Ray Hinton on "The Sun Does Shine"

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Old 26-07-19, 22:31   #2
 
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Movies re: Most Feared Man On Death Row & Botched Executions -FULL VIDEOS

The Most Feared Man > Patrick McKenna - Nevada Death Row

For a man to be labeled "the most dangerous criminal in Nevada," he must've done something wrong. But that's the moniker many have given to Patrick McKenna.


He has been on Nevada's death row since 1979, and he is considered the state's most dangerous felon.

Why? He's killed at least one and possibly as many as four people in addition to committing numerous violent physical and sexual assaults. He was once an enforcer to the mob and corrupt union bosses and, even now, demands respect from inmates and guards alike in one of the most secure prisons in America.

But he wasn't born a monster - he was made one. McKenna's life is a tragic tale of abuse and rage and an innocent child twisted by violence and neglect.


To date McKenna has been on death row longer than any other condemned man in Nevada. Read on to find out more about Nevada's most dangerous inmate, killer Pat McKenna.


Video Includes The Story of the Emperor of Death Row in The Hardest Jail in Texas & Why Texas Has the Rep of Having the Largest Numbers of Men Executed > Many of Whom Were Found to be Innocent, with Overwhelming Supporting Evidence, But White Texan Judges Refused Their Appeals





Death Row Stories is now in its fourth season, narrated by Susan Sarandon & produced by Robert Redford, tells the stories of the innocent men on Death Row

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Old 25-08-19, 03:13   #3
 
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Update Re: Most Feared Man On Death Row & Botched Executions -FULL VIDEOS

Executions Gone Wrong

A report on botched executions in several states, including Ohio, Arizona and Oklahoma. Episode reviews known cases when lethal injection executions ended horribly wrong.


Reel Truth Crime - Crime Documentary. Published on 24 Aug 2019


Each episode of Death Row Stories will unravel a different capital murder case that has twists and turns worthy of a crime thriller.
All of these stories are true, and call into question the myriad of beliefs about the death penalty and the American justice system itself.

Susan Sarandon (Dead Man Walking), whose Oscar honor was awarded for her powerfully moving portrayal of the Louisiana-based Catholic nun Sister Helen Prejean, who ministers to death row inmates and advocates for the abolition of capital punishment, will narrate each episode in the series. Academy Award-winning directors Alex Gibney (Taxi to the Dark Side) and Robert Redford (Ordinary People) will serve as Executive Producers.




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