"And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God"
-- Micah 6:8

"The duty of the prosecutor is to seek justice, not merely to convict."
-- American Bar Association Standard 3-1.2(c)

"There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia."
--Pope Benedict XVI, June 2004

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Oregon Jury: Death for "Extremists"

From the AP:
A jury Wednesday recommended that a father and his son be sentenced to death for planting a bomb that exploded inside an Oregon bank two years ago, killing two police officers and maiming a third.
In a trial that spanned three months, prosecutors portrayed Bruce and Joshua Turnidge as bigoted men who hated authorities, were desperate for money and feared that newly elected President Barack Obama would take away their guns.
Prosecutors urged jurors to sentence the men to death to prevent them from endangering prison staff or preaching their hatred for authorities to young prisoners who will someday be released. As convicted cop killers, the Turnidges will be popular in prison, they said.
A suprising verdict given the jurisdiction (left coast of Oregon) and an interesting argument for future dangerousness: beside the obvious continuing threat these anarchists would pose to the prison staff, the prosecution cited the danger that their anti-authoritarian, anti-government philosophy would be absorbed by the impressionable young inmates of the Oregon penal system.

Hmmm. Not so sure the reasoning is sound on the last point (after all, these impressionable young thugs are already not exactly Rotarians), but killing two police officers, one of whom was the bomb technician trying to disarm the bomb, coupled with their paranoid philosophy, is proof enough that these offenders would be future threats.

One wonders, though, if the jury in liberal western Oregon might not have been more offended, yea, verily, even unto death, by the viewpoints of these defendants, and thus more likely to buy the prosecution's "contamination" future dangerousness argument as the hook on which to hang their death sentence.

1 comment:

Kent said...

Interestingly, it may have been because they didn't say "I'm sorry". From the Portland Oregonian, a quote from one of the jurors: "Just give us something: remorse, expression, tears... We wanted to save them so badly but there was such a lack of emotion and caring and compassion."