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Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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The fire moved quickly through the house, a one-story wood-frame structure in a working-class neighborhood of Corsicana, in northeast Texas. Flames spread along the walls, bursting through doorways, blistering paint and tiles and furniture. Smoke pressed against the ceiling, then banked downward, seeping into each room and through crevices in the windows, staining the morning sky.
Buffie Barbee, who was eleven years old and lived two houses down, was playing in her back yard when she smelled the smoke. She ran inside and told her mother, Diane, and they hurried up the street; that’s when they saw the smoldering house and Cameron Todd Willingham standing on the front porch, wearing only a pair of jeans, his chest blackened with soot, his hair and eyelids singed. He was screaming, “My babies are burning up!” His children—Karmon and Kameron, who were one-year-old twin girls, and two-year-old Amber—were trapped inside.
Willingham told the Barbees to call the Fire Department, and while Dia…

Algeria: Ex-Police Chief Sentenced To Death

March 13, 2013: An Algeria court sentenced a former police commissioner to death for murdering a woman colleague and concealing the evidence of his crime, media reports said.

Abdelkrim Boutrik, formerly police chief in Adrar more than 1,500 kilometres (930 miles) from Algiers, cut the throat of 32-year-old police officer Cherifa Hadj Brahim in a remote desert area in July 2010 and hid the evidence.

The APS news agency said that after first denying any involvement in the killing, Boutrik was confronted by witness testimony and scientific evidence including on "his relations" with the victim.

El-Watan daily said in its online edition that Boutrik was also implicated in a vast network of alcohol trafficking, and that the murdered policewoman had "irrefutable evidence" of his involvement.

The death sentence was welcomed by relatives of the victim who attended the hearing in a court in Bechar in southwest Algeria.

"This killer deserves to be put to death at once. He killed an adorable girl who was loved by everyone in Adrar," said one woman outside the courthouse.

Although the death penalty is still on the statute books, Algeria has not carried out an execution since 1993.

Source: Agence France-Presse, March 13, 2013

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