California: With state executions on hold, death penalty foes rethink ballot strategy

California advocates of abolishing the death penalty got a jolt of momentum in March, when Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that he would not allow any executions to take place while he was in office.
But after trying twice this decade to persuade voters to end capital punishment, they have no plans to go to the ballot again in 2020. Rather than seeking to build on Newsom’s temporary reprieve for Death Row inmates, activists are taking their own pause.
Grappling with the legacy of their two failed initiatives, advocates are reassessing their strategy and retooling their message. Natasha Minsker, a political consultant who has long been involved with abolition efforts, said the governor’s moratorium has given advocates the opportunity to do long-term planning.
“There’s this excitement and energy in our movement that we haven’t had in a long time,” Minsker said.
Newsom’s executive order caught many Californians by surprise. Although he supported the unsuccessful ballot measures to abolish t…

Tennessee Executes Lee Hall

Hall is the second functionally blind prisoner executed in the United States since 1976 
Lee Hall has been executed by electric chair, after 28 years on death row, for the 1991 Chattanooga murder of his estranged girlfriend Traci Crozier. He was pronounced dead at 7:26 p.m. His last words were, "People can learn forgiveness and love to make this world a better place." Hall is just the 2nd legally blind prisoner to be executed in the United States since the death penalty was reinstated in 1976.
Crozier had left Hall in the spring of 1991, reportedly after he’d become abusive. On April 17, 1991, Hall threw a lit container full of gas into Crozier's car while she was in the front seat. Despite the severe burns covering her entire body, Crozier remained conscious and alert enough to express concern to emergency responders about her hair. She survived until the next day.
Hall has repeatedly expressed remorse for Crozier’s death. In a court filing from last year, his attorneys…

Iran: Rape victim who killed man in self defense hanged in Ahvaz

Iran Human Rights (December 4, 2019): An Iranian woman who according to her family was a rape victim, was hanged at Sepidar Prison in Ahwaz (Ahvaz) this morning. 
According to IHR sources, Somayeh Shahbazi Jahroei (33) who was sentenced to death for murdering a man six years ago, was executed at Ahwaz prison on December 4, 2019. 
IHR had previously warned about her scheduled execution
According to one of Somayeh's relatives, "the murder victim had tried to rape Somayeh. When the man died, Somayeh was scared and took the body out of the town and set it on fire".
In qisas cases, the plaintiff has the possibility to forgive or demand diya (blood money). 
In many cases, the victim's family are encouraged to put the rope is around the prisoner's neck and even carry out the actual execution by pulling off the chair the prisoner is standing on.
According to the Iranian Islamic Penal Code (IPC) murder is punishable by qisas which means “retribution in kind” or retalia…

Tennessee governor not stopping planned execution of blind inmate Lee Hall

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee announced Wednesday that he won't stop the state from putting a blind inmate to death in the electric chair later this week, clearing the way for the execution unless a federal court intervenes.
Lee Hall, a 53-year-old inmate who became blind from glaucoma during is decades in prison, is scheduled to be electrocuted Thursday for his conviction in the 1991 killing of his estranged girlfriend.
Hall had his sight when he entered death row nearly three decades ago, but attorneys for the condemned prisoner say he’s since become functionally blind due to improperly treated glaucoma.
Earlier this year, Hall chose the electric chair over lethal injection as allowed under state law. If the execution goes forward, he is believed to be just the second blind prisoner who will be executed since the death penalty was reinstated by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1976.
“Unless the federal courts intervene, Tennessee will become the first state in modern …

Tennessee Prepares to Execute Blind Death Row Inmate

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The execution of a blind man in Tennessee this week would mark only the second time in recent decades that a person without vision has been put to death in the U.S., the death row inmate’s lawyers say.
Lee Hall, 53, is scheduled to be electrocuted Thursday in a state that has accelerated the pace of its executions over the past year.
Hall had his sight when he entered death row nearly three decades ago, but attorneys for the condemned prisoner say he’s since become functionally blind due to improperly treated glaucoma.
Hall’s attorneys say only one other blind prisoner has been executed since the death penalty was reinstated by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1976.
His case illustrates a trend in capital punishment: The longer inmates across the country wait to die, the more medical ailments they are likely to have by the time they enter the execution chamber.
“Death row is not — and is not intended to be — a nurturing environment, and it is unfortunately an environment …

Active Shooter Drills May Not Stop A School Shooting — But This Method Could

School shootings like the recent one in Santa Clarita, Calif., have focused the nation's attention on school safety. And schools across the U.S. are wrestling with how to prevent themselves from becoming the site of the next tragedy.
Many schools are turning to highly visible "hardened" security measures. For example, at least eight states now have laws mandating active shooter drills in schools. But there's little research yet that shows that those drills are effective. Meanwhile, a new comprehensive report from the U.S. Secret Service underlines the agency's previous findings that there is one safety approach that does work: threat assessment, as part of a comprehensive program of social and emotional support for students.
Active shooter drills can scare vulnerable children
A new law in Illinois requires students to participate in active shooter drills at school. The drills often involve students hiding in the classroom and sometimes evacuating the school. Som…

Brazil: Mother who brutally stabbed her son to death for being gay gets 25 years in prison

The mother admitted she stabbed her son, drove his body out to a deserted cane field, and set it on fire.
A mother who was convicted of killing her son because he’s gay has been sentenced to 25 years in prison.
The December 2016 death of 17-year-old Itaberli Lozano at the hands of his mother shocked the world. 
Investigators accused the mother, Tatiana Lozano Pereira, 35, of stabbing her son, burning his body, and burying him in a cane field near Sao Paolo, Brazil.
RELATED A man shot & killed his 14-year-old son because he was gay
This past Wednesday, a jury sentenced Lozano Pereira to 25 years and eight months in prison after finding her guilty of homicide and corpse concealment.
Two accomplices, Victor Roberto da Silva and Miller da Silva Barissa, who were both teenagers at the time, have been sentenced to 21 years and eight months in prison for homicide, Veja reports.
Before his death, Itaberli was living with his grandmother, according to investigators. 
His mother was abusiv…

Rikers Island: la cárcel de los horrores de Nueva York

Click here to Google translate this article into your own language
La colonia penitenciaria de Rikers Island está clavada en un trozo de tierra que emerge del East River. La única vía de acceso al enorme correccional es un puente desde el barrio neoyorquino de Queens. Lleva tres minutos recorrerlo con el autobús de la línea Q100. Es el tiempo que necesita Hannah para retocarse antes de dejar todas sus pertenencias en la taquilla y pasar a ver a su novio. Ahí estuvo ella encerrada antes por drogas.
Al llegar al centro de visitas, un par de guardias suben e invitan a los pasajeros a dejar cualquier droga o arma antes de bajar. Al abrirse las puertas se siente un fuerte olor a queroseno. Todos se ponen en fila para que les olfatee un perro en medio del estruendo de los motores de los aviones que cruzan la bahía de Bowery en vuelo rasante hacia el aeropuerto de LaGuardia.
El conductor del Q100 es la primera persona que encuentran los presos de Rikers cuando son puestos en libertad. “Los s…

Japan Top Court Backs Lighter Sentence for Indiscriminate Killer

Osaka, Dec. 2 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Supreme Court upheld on Monday a high court ruling that overturned a death penalty and gave an indefinite term to an unemployed man for killing two pedestrians in downtown Osaka some seven years ago.
The man, Kyozo Isohi, 44, successively stabbed Shingo Minamino, then 42, and Toshi Sasaki, then 66, to death on a street in the Minami area in the southwestern Japan city on June 10, 2012, according to rulings by Osaka district and high courts.
In the district court trial under the lay judge system, Isohi was sentenced to death. But the high court handed down the lighter sentence on the grounds that he was suffering from auditory hallucinations and that only two people were killed without advance planning.
The prosecution as well as the defense side appealed the high court ruling to the Supreme Court.
The top Court's First Petty Bench, presided by Justice Hiroshi Koike, dismissed both appeals, fixing the life sentence.
Japan Top Court Backs Ind…

India: Death penalty, lynching, castration of rapists demanded in Hyderabad vet’s rape

Lynching the rapists, death penalty and castration of the accused were some of the suggestions that Parliamentarians proposed on Monday as they expressed outrage over the 26-year-old veterinarian’s rape in Hyderabad. 
Union Minister Rajnath Singh, meanwhile, said that the Centre is “ready for discussions to curb such crimes”.
Leading the chorus of angry parliamentarians, Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan Monday said rapists should be “brought out in public and lynched.” “I don’t know how many times I’ve stood and spoken after this kind of crime. I think it is time… whether Nirbhaya or Kathua or what happened in Telangana… I think the people now want the government to give a proper and definite answer,” she said in Rajya Sabha. She also added that the security personnel in charge of the area where the crime took place be held accountable and questions be asked. “I think these people need to be shamed in front of the entire country.”
Four men have been accused of raping and murdering a …