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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…

Bali Nine Andrew Chan’s wife shares her heartbreak over his death

Andrew Chan and Febyanti Herewila
Andrew Chan and Febyanti Herewila
EVERY morning when she wakes up Febyanti Herewila Chan sees the smiling face of her husband Andrew Chan.

It is the same smile she says he was wearing at the moment he was shot dead one year ago by an Indonesian firing squad.

He was also wearing his wedding ring that night, the symbol of his love for the young Javanese woman whom he married in a jail chapel on the eve of his execution.

A heartbroken Feby, as she is known, says the ring has never been returned to her. Attempts to recover it have yielded nothing.

“He was wearing it. I just wish that I could have it back. Every time I think about it, it gives you pain in your heart.”

Her voice trails off.

It is the final insult to the young widow.

The past year, since Andrew’s death by firing squad, has been painful as Feby has sought to heal her broken heart and strengthen her faith in God.

A Pastor, she has found it difficult to preach and is only now reaching a place where she feels she can preach without anger or bitterness.

There were times, after the execution, when she felt she wouldn’t survive, such was her profound sadness and loss.

Feby says the only thing that has kept her going is her faith and her promise to Andrew to fulfil their joint dream to set up a youth centre and school on the small Indonesian island of Sabu, one of three islands between Sumba and Rote, west of Timor.

She also vowed to fight injustice and speak out against the death penalty in her homeland and elsewhere. After his death Andrew wanted the fight to go on to save the others on death row in Indonesia and elsewhere.

The couple had long dreamt of the community centre and school on Sabu, to help educate young and underprivileged children and foster future Indonesian leaders who could grow up to also fight injustice.

“That is the only thing, to be honest, that keeps me going ….,” she says in tears. “So at least one day, if I die and I see him in heaven I can tell him I have done it,” Feby says of her plans.

“In his last letter Andrew told me to keep fighting the injustice in Indonesia.” He wanted her to study law, something she says she will do in the future.

Feby says there is a need to address the root cause of why people use and deal drugs rather than just execute traffickers.


Source: news.com.au, April 30, 2016

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