FEATURED POST

This is America: 9 out of 10 public schools now hold mass shooting drills for students

Image
How "active shooter" drills became normal for a generation of American schoolchildren.
"Are you kids good at running and screaming?" a police officer asks a class of elementary school kids in Akron, Ohio.
His friendly tone then turns serious.
“What I don’t want you to do is hide in the corner if a bad guy comes in the room,” he says. "You gotta get moving."
This training session — shared online by the ALICE Training Institute, a civilian safety training company — reflects the new normal at American public schools. As armed shooters continue their deadly rampages, and while Washington remains stuck on gun control, a new generation of American students have learned to lock and barricade their classroom doors the same way they learn to drop and roll in case of a fire.
The training session is a stark reminder of how American schools have changed since the 1999 Columbine school shooting. School administrators and state lawmakers have realized that a mass shoot…

Accused South Carolina church shooter, acting as own lawyer, helps pick jurors

Dylann Roof
Dylann Roof
The man accused of killing nine people at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina, last year helped choose jurors on Tuesday for his federal death penalty trial after being allowed to serve as his own lawyer.

Federal prosecutors are seeking the death penalty against 22-year-old avowed white supremacist Dylann Roof, who is charged with acts of hate crimes, obstruction of religion and firearm use that resulted in death.

U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel said he was not inclined to let Roof's former lawyers email prosecutors in the case on Roof's behalf despite the prisoner not having email access.

"Mr. Roof chose to represent himself and that choice has consequences," Gergel said, adding he would give the request more thought.

The judge also said the lawyers, appointed by him to serve as standby counsel, could no longer speak for Roof in court.

"You are not Mr. Roof's co-counsel," Gergel said. "That is off the table. I told you, Mr. Roof, that I thought this was a bad idea, self-representation."

Roof has not said publicly why he wants to defend himself against charges stemming from the shooting attack, carried out during a Bible study session at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in June 2015.

His lawyers previously said he wanted to plead guilty if federal prosecutors agreed to a sentence of life in prison without parole. They refused.

Roof faces the death penalty in a state murder trial set to begin early next year.

Tuesday marked the second day potential jurors were questioned individually in court, where Gergel asked about their opinions of the death penalty and whether they could be fair and impartial.

One woman who wrote in a questionnaire that she believed Roof was a racist, cold-blooded killer was qualified to possibly hear the case after she said she could presume him innocent for the trial.

Roof objected to a man who said the church massacre was "very wrong and very cowardly."

"He wants death so I think he should be struck," Roof said.

The judge, however, approved the man as a potential juror.

The final 12 jurors and six alternates will be selected from a pool of 70 people qualified by the judge after his questioning.

Source: Reuters, November 29, 2016

⚑ | Report an error, an omission; suggest a story or a new angle to an existing story; send a submission; recommend a resource; contact the webmaster, contact us: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com.


Opposed to Capital Punishment? Help us keep this blog up and running! DONATE!

Most Viewed (Last 30 Days)

Florida: Emilia Carr resentenced to life in prison

British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford on death row in Bali faces losing last-ditch appeal

Texas: Supreme Court rejects Larry Swearingen's plea for DNA testing

Texas: Reginald Blanton executed

Capital Punishment and Extreme Mental Torture

New Mexico: Swift end for House bill to reinstate death penalty

Iran Executed Three Juvenile Offenders in January

20 Minutes to Death: Record of the Last Execution in France

Indiana: Marcus Dansby's death penalty case rescheduled for spring of 2019

Nevada Inmate Serving 2 Life Terms Dead at Age 83, Decades After SCOTUS Overturned His Death Sentence