Killeen reader calls for changes in policy of carrying out executions

To the Editor:

There are 2,011 prisoners on death row in the USA. The average stay is difficult to determine because dozens, possibly hundreds, of cases are dismissed or reduced to life in prison, without parole.

Included are the mentally incompetent as well as those intellectually deficient (unable to comprehend the charges and punishment).

The state of Texas leads the U.S. in executions.

Out of 1,493 executed from 1976 through May 2013, 37.5% took place in Texas.

I’m a firm believer in the death penalty for anyone that rapes and kills a child, kills more than one person, kills officers of the law (to name a few).

Once these convictions prove the individual guilty, beyond the shadow of a doubt, the process should move swiftly with the goal for execution not to exceed one year.

Presently, there’s a movement in the state of Texas dedicated to cancel an inmate’s execution date of Nov. 20, 2019, and grant the convicted murderer additional time to show evidence that he may be innocent. He has been incarcerated since 1998.

Perhaps due to the proximity of the execution date, the case has attracted the attention of anti-death penalty organizations, law makers, pastors, celebrities and even the European Union Ambassador.

Lawyers are requesting a 30-day stay to review (new evidence) a second suspect and statements made years ago that were not truthful.

Personally, I would grant the 30 days. It should be noted that the sentencing of a person to death, and then waiting 10-20 years for the execution does not make sense.

The convicts are provided three meals daily, TV viewing, some A/C, allowed to study, etc.

In the meantime, families await for closure and many never get to see it.

Gov. Greg Abbott has only stopped one execution since taking office in 2015.

P.C. Santiago

retired master sergeant

Killeen

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