Trial by Fire - Did Texas execute an innocent man?

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…

Iran: Juvenile Offender Executed in Kerman Prison, Another At Risk in Kermanshah

The Iranian judiciary has executed a juvenile offender who was just 16 years old at the time of the crime for which he received a capital sentence.

Arman Bahr Asemani was hanged the morning of Monday, January 16 in Kerman Prison along with an older co-defendant, Shams Allah R., despite the protest of his lawyer and civil society activists.

Born February 10, 1997, Asemani was a legal minor at the time of the 2012 homicide for which he and Allah R. were arrested and charged.

The Iranian press has focused its coverage of the case on Allah R., the legal adult, with scarce reference to Asemani, reports HRANA.

The capital sentences were carried out as another juvenile offender (whose name has not been made public) at imminent risk of execution for his alleged role in a 2012 stabbing homicide has been brought to global attention by United Nations officials.

Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran Asma Jahangir, Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions Agnes Callamard, and Chairperson of the Committee on the Rights of the Child Benyam Dawit Mezmur sharply criticized the judiciary’s conduct in a joint statement Monday: “The Iranian authorities must immediately halt the execution of this juvenile and annul the death sentence against [the juvenile defendant] in compliance with international standards for the imposition of this form of punishment.”

Abdorrahman Boroumand Foundation has documented at least 122 executions of juvenile offenders in Iran since the beginning of 2000. Our juvenile offender project provides an in-depth look at the Iranian judiciary’s continued policy of executing such offenders, a practice which clearly violates the country’s international legal commitments.

➤ Read the original Persian reporting from HRANA.

Source: ABF blog, January 17, 2017

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