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Texas Should Not Have Executed Robert Pruett

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Update: Robert Pruett was executed by lethal injection on Thursday.
Robert Pruett is scheduled to be executed by the State of Texas Thursday. He has never had a chance to live outside a prison as an adult. Taking his life is a senseless wrong that shows how badly the justice system fails juveniles.
Mr. Pruett was 15 years old when he last saw the outside world, after being arrested as an accomplice to a murder committed by his own father. Now 38, having been convicted of a murder while incarcerated, he will be put to death. At a time when the Supreme Court has begun to recognize excessive punishments for juveniles as unjust, Mr. Pruett’s case shows how young lives can be destroyed by a justice system that refuses to give second chances.
Mr. Pruett’s father, Sam Pruett, spent much of Mr. Pruett’s early childhood in prison. Mr. Pruett and his three siblings were raised in various trailer parks by his mother, who he has said used drugs heavily and often struggled to feed the children. Wh…

California death-row inmate Timothy Russell commits suicide

San Quentin Execution Chamber
SAN QUENTIN (AP) — An inmate on California’s death row for the 1997 killing of two Riverside County sheriff’s deputies has died at San Quentin State Prison.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation said in a statement Monday that 53-year-old Timothy Russell was found unresponsive in his cell late Friday night and declared dead at the prison early Saturday.

The statement says Russell had no cellmate and his death is being investigated as a suicide.

He was sentenced to death in January 1999, two years after the ambush killings of two Riverside County deputies, 41-year-old James Lehmann Jr. and 33-year-old Michael Haugen.

Source: Associated Press, October 8, 2013

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