Archive for November 18th, 2010

2009: Danielle Simpson, “If I can’t be free – Kill me!!”

6 comments November 18th, 2010 Headsman

Last year on this date, Danielle Simpson was executed in Texas for murder.

Simpson, his wife, his brother, and another accomplice kidnapped an octogenarian church organist from her home, trussing her up and throwing her into the Nueces River to drown.

Though it would be another decade before his execution, the brutality of life on death row (and the usual appellate losing streak where the Fifth Circuit reigns) eventually ground him down into volunteering to expedite his execution.

I’m tired of being in an institution that’s unjust, degrading, and corrupted … I’m ready to die!! If I can’t be free – Kill Me!!

Simpson reversed himself shortly before the execution actually went down, but the further appeals on the matter of his “debilitating mental illness” and “diminished intellectual functioning” were equally unavailing.

It may not rise to a legal threshold, but the high school dropout’s thinking was clearly a bit scrambled. Death row has been known to have that effect.

One of Simpson’s attorneys at the Texas Defender Service, David R. Dow, recently wrote a well-received meditation on his life of representing defendants like Simpson who have virtually no prospect of success in the courts. The Autobiography of an Execution, blessedly un-tendentious despite the author’s unabashed death penalty opposition, makes a compelling stocking stuffer for the family member whose tastes run a bit grim.

On this day..

Entry Filed under: 21st Century,Capital Punishment,Common Criminals,Crime,Death Penalty,Diminished Capacity,Disfavored Minorities,Execution,Lethal Injection,Murder,Ripped from the Headlines,Texas,USA,Volunteers

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