ONTD Political

Clock is still ticking on Terrance Williams' execution

8:37 pm - 10/03/2012
Although convicted murderer Terrance "Terry" Williams was granted a stay of execution last week by a Philadelphia Common Pleas Court judge who ruled that recently unearthed evidence shows the prosecution coached its main witness and withheld relevant information at trial, the execution could still go forward if the Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturns the stay.

Chief Justice Ronald Castille, who was Philadelphia District Attorney at the time of the trial and who personally signed the death penalty certification for Williams, refused to recuse himself from considering the request from current Philly DA Seth Williams to overturn the stay.

One of Williams' defense attorneys is in a car heading west out of Philadelphia toward Rockview, where the execution could take place -- just in case.

The Department of Corrections has put previously approved witnesses to the execution on notice to be ready if the court overturns the stay.

A DOC spokeswoman would not comment on whether or not Williams has been transported from the prison in Greene County to Rockview, where the state's execution chamber is housed, citing security concerns.

The Supreme Court has ordered an end to a flurry of last-minute filings and responses from the prosecution and the defense. A ruling is expected soon.

Defense attorneys are double-checking an emergency filing to the US Supreme Court they plan to file if the stay is overturned.

Members of the Board of Pardons remain in the wings, having taken an application for clemency "under advisement." They are the penultimate bulwark to the death chamber; a unanimous vote for clemency sends the decision to the governor, who would then have the final say whether or not the execution would proceed.

In case anyone's wondering why this is such a huge deal, the reason why Williams is on death row is because he killed two men who had been abusing him for years. Even without the prosecution's antics, this case is fucked up.
myrrhmade 3rd-Oct-2012 09:04 pm (UTC)
Here's the petition to sign. I just tried to post something here about this, I'm glad the signal is getting boosted!
kitanabychoice 3rd-Oct-2012 09:37 pm (UTC)
Thank you for that link!
myrrhmade 3rd-Oct-2012 09:43 pm (UTC)
smirk_dog 3rd-Oct-2012 11:42 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the link.
myrrhmade 3rd-Oct-2012 11:47 pm (UTC)
sakuraberries 3rd-Oct-2012 09:59 pm (UTC)
Shouldn't the sexual abuse have been presented at his trial, though? Because the whole situation is making me think of Battered Wife syndrome, and I feel like his lawyer should have been allowed to incorporate that into his defense. Did these men still have access to Williams when he killed them?
darsynia 3rd-Oct-2012 10:46 pm (UTC)
Having read the above linked petition, it looks like he didn't tell his lawyer out of shame, and the lawyer didn't recognize the signs of abuse to inquire. :(
myrrhmade 3rd-Oct-2012 11:48 pm (UTC)
THIS. Heartbreaking.
darsynia 3rd-Oct-2012 10:49 pm (UTC)
I'm thinking of calling the governor's office tomorrow; I live in his hometown (they probably kept the house), and maybe that might get noticed--a long shot worth attempting. The circumstances are so heart wrenching!
myrrhmade UPDATE3rd-Oct-2012 11:51 pm (UTC)
*crosses fingers, toes, eyeballs...*
It looks like they may have upheld a stay of execution.
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