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Sunday, January 30, 2005

Death Penalty and Connecticut:

Here in the Nutmeg State, we have the possibility of executing a death row prisoner for the first time in 45 years. This story has been covered by the local media here ad nauseum, so I won't go into many of the details. What we have though is a man, Michael Ross, who murdered 8 women in the 80s, and is now faced with the prospect of finally paying his penance for his brutality. Ross has been incarcerated for 17 years awaiting this moment, but only recently has he resolved to expedite the execution himself. Mr. Ross, it seems, has made the choice to die.

Most of us up here agree with his decision, especially the families of the victims. However, the ultra-liberal legal establishment does not. For the past many weeks, we have heard the same group of activist litigators and judges explain to the public how the conditions at Northern Correctional are deplorable, and how such conditions have led Mr. Ross down the path of insanity (they call it "death row syndrome"). This insanity, of course, means that Mr. Ross cannot possibly make a rational decision to end the appelate process, and seek to end his own life.

This is the same group of individuals that would have you believe that ending the life of an unborn fetus is an acceptable means of birth control, and ending the life of a terminally ill individual is equally acceptable, but terminating the life of a serial murderer is far too egregious to consider, especially if the inmate has himself decided that he no longer has the desire or will to fight the inevitable. This is to say that killing the innocent has a place in society, whereas killing the guilty as punishment does not.

The public has grown weary of such moral equivalence. Aside from his own desires, Mr. Ross committed heinous crimes. Multiple heinous crimes. The fact that he has lived in relative comfort (compare his "living conditions" with the deaths of his victims, and you will see why I use the word comfort) for 17 years is bad enough. To draw this ordeal out further while the families of the dead have to relive this trauma over and over again just makes it worse. It's time for the state to do what's right. End this situation once and for all. Put Mr. Ross to death.

MORE: I find Chief U.S. District Judge Robert N. Chatigny's conduct in this case appalling, and I don't understand why there is such an absence of public outrage on the matter. Read the excerpts of a conference call between Chatigny and T. R. Paulding, the lawyer for Michael Ross:

"(L)ooking at the record in a light most favorable to Ross, he should never have been convicted. Or, if convicted, he should never have been sentenced to death because his sexual sadism, which has been found by every single person who looked at him, is clearly a mitigating factor. Again, we're looking at a record in a light most favorable to him.


I suggest to you that Michael Ross may the least culpable, the least, of the people on death row.

The least culpable? Are you out of your mind, Judge? Have you read the police reports of the crimes committed by this man? What if it was your daughter that was raped and murdered? Would you then say "Well, he's sick. It was his illness that caused this to happen? Would you? I doubt it.

If ANYONE has a conflict of interest in this case, it is you, Judge. You are the anti-death penalty advocate who will stop at nothing to ensure that an execution does not happen on your watch, so you might as well start by threatening an officer of the court.

Pray, sir, that this never happens to someone you love. For your sake, I hope it doesn't.


.: posted by Dave 9:54 AM

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