In two instances, “school officials did not follow the requirements of Florida statute or federal laws governing students with disabilities”
Following the Parkland shooting that left 17 people dead, the Broward County School District commissioned an independent review. The review, conducted by the Collaborative Educational Network of Tallahassee, found that the shooter was inappropriately denied special needs accommodations at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
A Broward County judge ordered public release of the report, entitled “Independent Review of ‘NC’s’ Education Record,” and though much of it was redacted, the Sun Sentinel found that the redacted portions could be read by copying and pasting the text into another document.
In the year leading up to the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, killer Nikolas Cruz was stripped of the therapeutic services disabled students need, leaving him to navigate his schooling as a regular student despite mounds of evidence that he wasn’t.
When he asked to return to a special education campus, school officials fumbled his request.
Those conclusions were revealed Friday in a consultant’s report commissioned by the Broward public school system. Broward Circuit Judge Elizabeth Scherer ordered that the report be released publicly, but with nearly two-thirds of the content blacked out.
The school district said the alterations were needed to comply with the shooter’s privacy rights, but the method the district used to conceal the text failed. The blacked-out text became visible when pasted into another computer file.
The consultant found two specific instances of failure by the school officials.
Without directly criticizing the schools, the consultant, the Collaborative Educational Network of Tallahassee, recommended that the district reconsider how cases like Cruz’s are handled. The recommendations suggest that Cruz could have been offered more help in his final two years in high school, leading up to the Feb. 14 shooting.
Whether that would have changed the outcome is impossible to know.
The consultant found that the district largely followed the laws, providing special education to the shooter starting when he was 3 years old and had already been kicked out of day care. But “two specific instances were identified,” the report says, where school officials did not follow the requirements of Florida statute or federal laws governing students with disabilities.
— School officials misstated Cruz’s options when he was faced with being removed from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School his junior year, leading him to refuse special education services.
— When Cruz asked to return to the therapeutic environment of Cross Creek School for special education students, the district “did not follow through,” the report reveals.
The school’s misstatement regarding Cruz’s options resulted in his having no special needs care for over year before his deadly rampage. Even classified as a general admission student, however, he should have had access to school counseling and related mental health services.
School officials misstated Cruz’s options when he was faced with removal from the Florida high school his junior, which led him to refuse special education services, according to the report.
When Cruz was asked to return to the therapeutic environment of Cross Creek School for special education students, the district “did not follow through,” the report said.
“Upon entering the room and seeing the Cross Creek representatives, the student immediately became upset and verbally aggressive. He refused to sit at the table, angrily repeating that he would not go back to Cross Creek and that he wanted only to stay at Stoneman. He intended to graduate from the school,” the report said, according to the Sun-Sentinel.
. . . Three days after he was forced by the district to withdraw from Stoneman Douglas High, he purchased an AR-15 rifle. Then, a year after his ejection from the school, he returned for the mass shooting.
The district treated him “like a general education student” for his final two years, but even those students should have access to counseling and mental health services, the report said.
The shooter’s attorneys call the report an attempt to “whitewash” the failings of the school and of the school district.
Fox News continues:
But Cruz’s attorneys called the report a “whitewash” commissioned by the district to absolve it of responsibility for its handling of Cruz’s psychological problems, according to the Sun-Sentinel.
“I think that the report is an attempt by the school board to absolve itself of any liability or responsibility for all the missed opportunities that they had in this matter,” said Gordon Weekes, the chief assistant public defender.
Posted by Fuzzy Slippers Sunday, August 5, 2018 at 5:00pm
One of Minnesota’s most violent and infamous sex offenders — who has admitted to raping more than 60 women and who has quickly re-offended every time he’s been previously released from prison — is set to go free yet again, after more than 30 years behind bars.
The Minnesota Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a request by the state’s Department of Human Services to review the case of Thomas Ray Duvall, a serial rapist who admitted to brutally raping dozens of teenage girls in the 1970s and 1980s.
The court’s ruling comes two months after the state Court of Appeals ruled Duvall should be allowed to be released into the community — under supervision — after spending three decades behind bars, the Star Tribune reported.
The ruling ends a five-year legal battle over Duvall’s future. The case set off a political firestorm over Minnesota’s civil commitment system, which confines sex offenders indefinitely after their prison terms ends.
“I am honestly so devastated, I have no words at this moment,” a family member of one of Duvall’s victims told FOX9 after the court’s ruling. “We are terrified. The public needs to know how dangerous Duvall is.”
Duvall, now 63, committed his first known sexual assault in 1975, when he and two other males raped a 17-year-old girl. He re-offended three years later when he picked up a 17-year-old girl at the State Fair, promised to drive her home, and instead raped her.
Within months of his release from prison for that crime, he attempted to force another woman into his car and threatened her with a knife, the Star Tribune reported.
Over the next decade, Duvall was arrested – and released – multiple times for raping several other teenagers, including a 14-year-old and 15-year-old in 1982.
Duvall was finally sentenced to his current term, 20 years in prison, after he was nabbed for raping a 17-year-old girl inside a Brooklyn Park apartment — just 12 days after his release from jail in 1987. According to the Star Tribune, Duvall talked his way into the apartment a day after Christmas, bound the teenager with an electric cord and then repeatedly raped her for more than three hours while hitting her with a hammer.
In 1991, Duvall was civilly committed as a psychopathic personality and sent to the Minnesota Sex Offender Program. Duvall was diagnosed as a sexual sadist and has admitted to more than 60 victims, the Star Tribune reported.
In June 2015, U.S. District Judge Donovan Frank ruled the state’s sex offender program was unconstitutional, calling it a “punitive system” that violates offenders’ rights to due process. Frank’s ruling was later overturned by a higher court, but signified a shift among specialists to be more willing to support offenders’ petitions for conditional release.
The Star Tribune reported that, before Frank’s ruling, only three sex offenders had been discharged from the program in its 20-year history. Since then, the number has risen to 26.
At a trial last spring, Duvall testified he had earned his right to a provisional discharge and had learned to control his violent sexual fantasies.
At the same trial, three outside evaluators testified that Duvall should not be released from the program, arguing he remains fixated on deviant and violent sexual thoughts despite treatment. One of the evaluators, forensic psychologist Dr. James Alsdurf, described Duvall as “obsessed with sex – most of it violent,” the Star Tribune reported.
Meanwhile, the program’s own staff described Duvall as a model detainee who was committed to his treatment program – testimony the appeals court panel heavily relied on when saying he should be released into the community — despite acknowledging that Duvall still has a risk of reoffending, given his violent history.
Human Services Commissioner Emily Piper said in statement that she opposed Duvall’s release “out of a deep concern for public safety.”
The Star Tribune reported Duvall is expected to be released to a secure group home in the Twin Cities this fall. If he violates any of the more than two dozen conditions of his plan, the sex offender program can revoke his discharge and place him back in confinement.
Ask anyone who has worked in some of America’s failing public schools and nearly all of them will tell you the same thing: The biggest problem isn’t the quality of the teachers. It’s the behavior of the kids; angry, disruptive, disrespectful kids whose behavior is out of control. This is true not only in the poor schools in the inner cities, but in schools in the largely white rural parts of the US as well. The kids themselves are only partly to blame — students, after all, are what adults make them.
In the year I spent as a substitute teacher in some of the toughest schools in inner city Los Angeles, chronicled in my new book “Sit Down and Shut Up: How Discipline Can Set Students Free” (St. Martin’s Press), I was threatened and cursed by students more times than I could count.
One kid called me an “Urkel-looking motherf–ker.” That part was the kid’s fault (or maybe that of his parents). But what happened next wasn’t. I called the hall monitor and had him taken to the principal’s office. But soon after, he came back into my class with a note that read, “Okay to return to class.” There was no apology, no detention, no one called at home. He didn’t have to write a letter explaining why he’d erupted so angrily, and he most certainly wasn’t suspended.
This was the fault of the adults in the school. In the course of a generation, this behavior from kids — coupled with either no reaction or an overreaction by adults — has gotten worse.
It wasn’t always thus.
After a particularly difficult day, a teacher who had also attended the school as a teenager remarked to me, “This school was always tough, but we used to fight each other; [now] they fight the teacher.”
What happened between the time that teacher (and I) were kids to now to mark such a dramatic shift? I spent a year trying to unlock that mystery.
One culprit is the United Nations, and the notion of children’s rights.
My first encounter with the idea of children’s rights was at a middle school where the students were so unruly that at least a half-dozen teachers had quit from exhaustion, including the one for whom I was substituting. A group of kids was roughhousing and cursing as others were trying to complete work. Because of one student’s foul language and because he’d launched an eraser in my general direction, I threatened to hold him in for recess — a punishment teachers have been doling out to kids since recess was invented.
But he and his friends, none more than 5 feet tall, told me that I couldn’t do that because they “have a right to play.” Having schooled me to their satisfaction, they promptly went back to swinging from the rafters and ignoring anything else I said that day.
I thought it was a joke until the assistant principal reprimanded me when I tried to make good on my threat.
An international treaty called the Convention of the Rights of the Child, which was adopted in 1989, defined the notion of what a child is and is not entitled to. It would become the most ratified treaty in UN history. The treaty is smart and wise in many ways, insisting that children have a right to shelter and the right to be protected in war. My favorite part states that children have a right to a name. That’s both beautiful and sad: Imagine what it must be like to be a child and have never been given a name.
But it doesn’t end there.
The UN treaty insists that young people be given the right to freedom of speech and the right to practice their own religion or no religion as they see fit. (I shudder to think what would have happened had I told my preacher father that I had a right not to go to church when he was dragging me out of bed on Sunday mornings.)
Maybe you think that 30-year international law — which, by the way, the US never ratified — has had no impact on America’s public schools. Think again. Article 31 says, “State Parties recognize the right of the child to rest and leisure, to engage in play and recreational activities appropriate to the age of the child.” There it is: the right to play. Schools have taken it upon themselves to spread to these students that they have inalienable right to play, even when they misbehave — and the kids have taken it up with gusto.
Legislators in California have been trying to pass a children’s rights bill similar to the UN treaty, enshrining at the state level what Congress refused to do 30 years ago.
In another instance, I tried to send a kid to the office for being disruptive. Surely that wasn’t outlawed? Wrong again. An administrator chastised me that they don’t allow teachers to send disruptive students to the office. Instead, they “let the students decide when they want to take a break,” because, according to her, sending students to the office takes away the student’s autonomy.
The policy was specific to that school, not a politically organized desire to follow the convention, but the effect was powerful nonetheless — and poorly reasoned. Since when has a middle-schooler who is having the time of his life with his friends and ignoring everything a teacher says, suddenly stopped and thought, “You know what, let me step outside on a break and then go back in and focus on the homework I didn’t do last night”?
I don’t want to overstate the issue. There are more factors at play than just a UN charter — including the rise of charter schools and the elimination of basic forms of discipline like detention and suspension.
This is surely what led former dean of Harvard Law School Martha Minow to write that “advocates of children’s rights use the same rights . . . to place them in the same legal category as adults.” Turning kids into adults in this way, and allowing them to behave however they choose without reasonable consequences for those actions, turns children into slaves of their impulses. This is the opposite of freedom.
The FBI is tracking a mere handful of Castro spies in Miami, and El Niuyortain is making a big deal out of it.
Yes, a whopping number of 5 Cuban exiles with connections to Castro, Inc. — who are very proud of their pro-Castro activism– have been “targeted” by FBI agents.
As one might expect, El Niuyortain is shining a bright light on this FBI investigation as a nefarious human rights abuse by the Trump administration.
Thank God, dear Mildred, that the New York Times is paying much more attention to these human rights abuses in the U.S. than on all those fake claims of human rights abuses in the socialist utopia of Cuba!
From You-Know-Who, Babalu’s favorite news outlet:
The F.B.I. Is Quietly Contacting Cubans in Florida, Raising Old Alarm Bells
Julio V. Ruiz, a 71-year-old retired psychiatrist with a long history of participating in talks with the Cuban government, tried to ignore the persistent knocking at his door by two strangers when they showed up uninvited one afternoon last week.
The rapping on the door went on for 15 minutes. It was the F.B.I.
“Everyone tells you not to speak to them and to call your lawyer,” Dr. Ruiz said. “But you get scared. I was measured in what I said, and gave them a brief history of Cuba going back to the 19th century.”
At least five Cuban-Americans in Miami, including Dr. Ruiz, who have opposed a trade embargo with Cuba and promoted better relations with the communist government in Havana, said they received surprise visits in the past week from federal agents.
The law enforcement representatives were vague about their intentions, gave only their first names, and asked questions that seemed intended to learn about contacts with Cuban diplomats, Dr. Ruiz said…
… Those contacted were among a large group of exiles who came to the United States as children in the early 1960s, fleeing the Castro dictatorship. As adults, they supported engaging with the Cuban government, even when doing so was deeply unpopular in South Florida and often caused them to be ostracized…… Some of those contacted said they feared that they were being targeted as part of President Trump’s moves to curtail travel to Cuba and roll back new openings with Havana that had been enacted by the Obama administration….. “I think it borders on harassment, because it isn’t illegal to talk about stuff with the embassy of the country where you were born,” said Elena Freyre, 70, president of ForNorm, a foundation that promotes the normalization of relations between Washington and Havana. “And it’s kind of weird to have the F.B.I. asking questions about that.”Read the whole shocking article HERE
Dress codes are a critical part of a well managed school.
- Dress codes create order which helps in the learning process of students.
- Dress codes reduce sexual contact and harassment.
- Dress codes teach children how to dress professionally when they become adults.
By Janine Puhak
One New Jersey charter school’s decision to turn away students on the first day of classes for seemingly minor dress code violations has outraged many, both within and beyond the school community.
On August 27, reportedly “half” of the high schoolers enrolled at Marion P. Thomas Charter School in Newark were dismissed upon arrival for their first day of classes for being out of uniform, NJ.com reports.
As the students proceeded to gather at a nearby park, local basketball coach Ma’at Mys spotted the group and paused the youth basketball camp he was running to investigate what happened.
“Marion P Thomas locked their doors to students who don’t have belts or all black shoes,” Mys wrote in a Facebook post with footage he captured at the time of conversations between himself and the Thomas students. “This is how charter schools help high risk children. If you have a child at the school, reach out to them.”
The clip has since gone viral with over 121,000 views and sparked great debate on the social platform.
While some Facebook commenters voiced support for the teens’ dismissal over the uniform abuses, others were furious that the students were refused entry – on the first day of classes – and were effectively locked out of the building.
Meanwhile, Interim Chief School Administrator Misha Simmonds told NJ.com that parents were immediately contacted if their child had been dismissed, and that school officials soon acknowledged that “turning students away wasn’t the best approach for student safety.”
School administrators issued a letter next day that did not apologize for the incident but explained the logic behind the controversial decision.
“Since its inception, Marion P. Thomas Charter School has had a uniform policy. The policy is intended to help our school promote a more effective learning environment, foster school unity and bridge socioeconomic differences between children. Wearing a uniform teaches students appropriate dress and decorum in school, helps to improve student conduct and discipline and prepares them for their future workplace,” the statement read.
“Our high school team wanted to ensure our students complied with this policy, for all of the reasons aforementioned. Their best intentions led to some students being asked to return home. We have communicated with our families who were impacted by this decision.
“While we realize school policies are important, we recognize that our students’ well-being is our utmost importance. Therefore, we have implemented a process that will not compromise the safety of our high school students.”
Moving forward, the Thomas school has launched a fundraiser to gather regulation uniforms, footwear and accessories to “stock an emergency closet for our students.” In addition, Thomas students have been provided black tape to conceal any white detailing on their school shoes, Yahoo Lifestyle reports.
A new White House aide knows the Cuban role in destabilizing the region.
The crisis in Venezuela threatens to destabilize the Western Hemisphere but doing something about it requires addressing the support from Cuba that is keeping strongman Nicolás Maduro in power despite his overwhelming unpopularity. Ditto for Daniel Ortega, whose government has been killing fellow Nicaraguans.
One man who understands the Cuban role is Mauricio Claver-Carone, who will soon join the Trump White House as senior director of the National Security Council for Western Hemisphere Affairs. The media call Mr. Claver-Carone a “hard-liner” on Cuba and a staunch defender of the U.S. trade embargo, which is true.
But as the son of a Cuban exile, the 43-year-old Mr. Claver-Carone is also a Catholic University-educated lawyer who has spent years fighting for human rights in Cuba. As the editor of the blog Capitol Hill Cubans, he showed a sophisticated understanding of how Cuba uses intimidation and propaganda to attack democracy in the hemisphere. Mr. Claver-Carone has extensive experience working with other countries as a senior adviser for international affairs at the U.S. Treasury and acting U.S. executive director at the International Monetary Fund.
The world has stood by as more than 2.3 million Venezuelans suffering under socialist deprivation have been forced to flee their collapsing country. Mr. Claver-Carone’s arrival is a sign that the White House is serious about addressing the root cause of the problem.
Two youths in Colombia reportedly committed suicide in late August as the sick “Momo suicide challenge” continues to spread worldwide.
A 12-year-old girl and a 16-year-old boy took their own lives, within just 48 hours of each other, according to local radio outlet Caracol. The deaths happened in the municipality of Barbosa, in the north west part of the Colombian area of Santander, according to the Daily Mail.
Local media, including RCN Radio, reported the teen boy likely knew the younger girl and passed the game to her, before killing himself. A mere 48 hours later, the 12-year-old girl was found hanged.
Police seized the children’s phones, which were said to have messages linking them to the Momo suicide game.
“Apparently, they practiced this game through WhatsApp and it invited the young people to hurt themselves,” government secretary Janier Landono said. “The game has different challenges and the suicide is at the end.”
The reported deaths are the first to be linked to the game in Colombia, which is thought to have originated on a Facebook group page. Police in Argentina are investigating whether “Momo” is linked to the suicide of a 12-year-old girl in the district of Escobar, which occurred last month.
WhatsApp did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.
The vile “Momo suicide game” has been garnering attention after it began spreading on WhatsApp, prompting police warnings. If players fail to complete the challenges in the game, they receive threatening messages from an avatar dubbed Momo, a bird-like woman with eyes protruding out of her head, who says the user will be cursed with an “evil spell.”
There is also a Momo doll created by Japanese doll artist Midori Hayashi, though Hayashi has nothing to do with the vulgar video game.
“Momo” is a viral challenge that asks people to add a contact via WhatsApp. The user is then urged to commit self-harm or suicide. The “game” has fueled comparisons to the sinister “Blue Whale challenge” that led to reports of suicides in Russia and the U.S, as well as the online fictional character of “Slender Man.” In 2014, two 12-year-old girls in Wisconsin attempted to kill a classmate in an attempt to please the horror character.
Last month, the “Momo” game made its way into the popular “Minecraft” video game, which prompted Microsoft to clamp down on it.
Study claiming US is home of one-third of mass-shooters worldwide debunked; figure less than 1.5 percent
A widely-popularized study adopted by the Obama administration claiming the U.S. has by far the most mass public shooters in the world has been criticized and dismissed by new research.
John. R. Lott Jr., president of the Crime Prevention Research Center and the author of the new study, has always been skeptical of the research by Adam Lankford, a professor at the University of Alabama, whose work gained special prominence after then-President Barack Obama cited his study in remarks about the San Bernardino attack in December 2015.
“Here’s an amazing thing, [Lankford] refuses to provide his list of cases, he refuses to explain exactly how he got it. This is not just some normal academic study – President Obama many times cited this study as a source for his claims.”
“Here’s an amazing thing, [Lankford] refuses to provide his list of cases, he refuses to explain exactly how he got it. This is not just some normal academic study – President Obama many times cited this study as a source for his claims. I can’t find any other academic research that’s gotten so much worldwide attention,” Lott told Fox News, adding that people across the world heard about the study.
Despite that, the study became go-to research across the media, with the New York Times and CNN frequently citing it. Just this Wednesday, liberal news site Vox referenced a CNN article that cited Lankford’s work.
Lankford declined an interview request about his study and told Fox News in an email that he’s “not interested in giving any serious thought to John Lott or his claims.”
With little success to stop the myth of mass shootings as a uniquely American problem becoming ingrained across the world, Lott took the matter into his own hands, releasing a comprehensive study this week that debunks Lankford’s claims.
After crunching the numbers, Lott concluded in his study that the U.S. accounts for less than three percent of the world’s mass public shootings over a 15-year period – between 1998 and 2012 – which is significantly lower than what Lankford’s work has shown.
“My most conservative count is well over three thousand shooters over just the last 15 years. My best count is that there were 10,800 of these public mass shooters over the last 15 years.”
Lott said that he looked at the last 15 years rather than the last 47 years as Lankford did, because it’s nearly impossible to come up with perfectly accurate information about mass public shooters in, for example, Africa in the 1960s.
“My most conservative count is well over three thousand shooters over just the last 15 years. My best count is that there were 10,800 of these public mass shooters over the last 15 years,” Lott said.
Compare that with Lankford’s research, which found merely 292 mass public shooters over a 47-year period across the world, with 90 of those in the U.S., per his research.
Lott is committed to transparency about his study, listing every single case used in the research in a massive 451-page appendix of the study. He claims to have used the University of Maryland’s Global Terrorism Database, complimented by additional search tools to find cases that weren’t listed in the dataset.
Of 1,491 mass public shootings reviewed by Lott, only 43 of those were in the U.S. This represents just 2.88 percent of all the cases. In per capita terms, the data put the U.S. below Finland, Norway or Switzerland. It’s still slightly higher than other Western countries such as France, Germany or the United Kingdom.
Lankford’s main conclusion of his data was that there’s something in the American culture that makes people commit more public mass shootings than people in other cultures.
For Lott, the actual data shows that the mass shooter problem in the U.S. is far from being a unique American experience. His question remains how the media and a president was able to get away with pushing a botched study published in a “low-rank journal” despite criticism.
Robert Boyd Rhoades kidnapped eight-year-old Michael Lyons while he was walking home from school in 1996, stabbed him up to 80 times with a fishing knife and kept him alive for nearly 10 agonizing hours before dumping his body in the Feather River, just up the street from the child’s home.
The ‘Grim Sleeper’ killed nine women and a teenage girl over the course of 22 years, targeting drug addicts and hookers and tossing their naked bodies along roads or in the trash.
These are just some of the 744 inmates currently on California’s Death Row.
But as Jerry Brown’s tenure as governor of California draws to a close in January, capital punishment supporters have raised the specter that he could commute many, if not all, of the sentences.
On March 28, California’s Supreme Court issued an administrative order making it possible for Brown to commute the sentences or grant clemency.
Michele Hanisee, president of the Association of Deputy District Attorneys in Los Angeles County, told the Orange County Register earlier this week that this removes any impediment Brown may have faced. Before that, a governor had to get the approval of the majority of the state Supreme Court in the case of an inmate with two or more felony convictions.
“They basically have green-lighted the governor to grant clemency to anyone…and said they won’t interfere,” she said.
California has the largest death row population in the country, but only 13 have been executed since capital punishment was reintroduced to the state in 1978, with the last one occurring in 2006. Appeals that drag out for many years are common. Last year, there were 400 death penalty appeals pending.
Despite its liberal reputation, more than half of California’s residents have expressed support for the death penalty, striking down referenda calling for it to end.
Brown, a former Jesuit seminarian who as a young man demonstrated against capital punishment, made his opposition to it clear during his political campaigns, but also said he’d respect the law regarding it while serving as attorney general and governor.
Asked if the governor was considering commuting death sentences, a spokesperson for Brown told Fox News: “A request for commutation is a serious matter, and every applicant is carefully and diligently vetted. The Governor issued commutations earlier this month… California inmates can petition to have their sentence reduced or eliminated by applying for a commutation of sentence.
“To be clear, no individuals on death row have received commutations.”
Many families of victims of California’s death row inmates have been outspoken about capital punishment, with some supporting it and others opposing.
Beth Webb, whose sister and some friends died in a 2011 shooting at a hair salon, said at a 2016 press conference: “Neither me nor my mom will find closure in the death of another human being.”
Michael Lyons’ mother, Sandra Friend, told the Los Angeles Times in 2016: “From the first inflicted wound to Michael, it was 10 hours to the last one.
“For a grown man to inflict that kind of painful torture on a child – he got the right sentence. He got the only sentence that would bring any justice.”
Kent Scheidegger, an attorney who argued for Proposition 66 – a measure to speed up executions – said that anything is possible as far as Brown and California politics, but he believed the governor would not commute death sentences.
“Despite his personal opinion, he said he’d enforce the death penalty,” said Scheidegger, who is legal director of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation in California.
Scheidegger expressed concern about the state high court’s order appearing to give Brown more sway over commuting death sentences, telling Fox News: “That’s worrisome.”
Since executions rarely have been carried out in California and elsewhere, some have called the death penalty symbolic, and pointless.
Scheidegger said he disagrees.
“It’s important because there are some crimes for which anything less is simply not justice.”
–Scott Peterson, who murdered his pregnant wife, Laci. Prosecutors said Peterson began plotting his wife’s murder after he began an affair with a woman named Amber Frey, who testified against him.
–Robert Boyd Rhoades, who kidnapped eight-year-old Michael Lyons while he walked home from school. Lyons’ body was found the day after in a river near where he lived. Rhoades was on parole, and had been convicted on child molestation charges, when he kidnapped Lyons.
–Charles Ng, who along with an accomplice carried out a string of murders in 1984 and 1985, including torture and grisly killings of six men, three women and two babies. They killed the man for their cars and to steal from them. They turned the women into sex slaves and videotaped some of their crimes.
–Lonnie “Grim Sleeper” Franklin was convicted of killing nine women and a teenage girl from 1985 to 2007. Detectives believed he may have killed up to 25 people. He targeted women who were young and vulnerable. They were drug addicts or prostitutes. He dumped their naked bodies along roads or in the trash.
–David “Trailside Killer” Carpenter, who preyed on hikers. He killed seven people, raping some. Detectives said that he engaged in “putting the victims at some point in a position of pleading for their lives.”
–Run P. Chhoun, the suspected leader of the San Bernardino-based Tiny Rascals gang, was found guilty of murdering Nghiep Thich Le, 48, and his father, Hung Dieu Le, 73, during a home invasion robbery in Sacramento; and Miguel Vargas Avina, of Pomona. Authorities said Avina was killed because Chhoun and his accomplice Sam Pan mistakenly thought he was a rival gang member.
— Richard Farley, a former employee of ESL Incorporated in Sunnyvale, stalked co-worker Laura Black for four years starting in 1984, sending her around 200 letters over the period. Black obtained a temporary restraining order against him on February 2, 1988, with a court date for February 17, 1988, to make it permanent. On February 16, he shot and killed seven people at ESL, and injured four more including Black.
–Randy Kraft, known as the ‘Scorecard Killer’, murdered at the very least 16 young men over a period of 11 years beginning in 1972. He is also believed to have committed the rape and murder of up to 51 other boys and young men. Many victims had been enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps. He would typically ply them with alcohol and tranquilizers, before torturing, binding and sexually abusing them, before killing them usually by strangulation, asphyxiation or bludgeoning. He obtained his nickname after investigators discovered a coded list of 61 printed terms and phrases believed to refer to each of his victims.
–Ramon Salcido murdered seven people, including his wife and two of his daughters, aged four and 22-months in 1989 after a night of drinking and taking cocaine. His three-year-old daughter, Carmina, survived, even though she was slashed across the throat, and was left lying in a field beside the bodies of her sisters.
–Marcus Wesson, the patriarch of a cult-like clan, was sentenced to death 2005 for killing nine of his children, many of whom were born of incest and sexual abuse. He was also found guilty of sexually abusing the daughters and nieces who grew up in his house.