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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…

Saudi Arabia carries out first execution of 2017

Public execution in Saudi Arabia (file photo)
Public execution in Saudi Arabia (file photo)
RIYADH -- Saudi Arabia carried out its first death sentence of the year on Tuesday, following more than 150 executions in 2016.

Mamdouh Al Anzi was sentenced to death following his conviction for shooting dead another Saudi in a dispute, the interior ministry said.

He was executed in Arar, a city near Iraq.

Beheading with a sword is the most common form of execution in the kingdom.

Saudi Arabia executed 153 locals and foreigners last year under its Islamic legal code, down slightly from the previous year when it carried out at least 158 executions, according to Amnesty International.

Rights group Amnesty International said Saudi Arabia carried out at least 158 death sentences in 2015, coming 3rd after Iran and Pakistan. 

Amnesty's figures do not include secretive China. 

Rights experts have raised concerns about the fairness of trials in the kingdom but the government says the death penalty is a deterrent.

Source: Agence France-Presse, January 17, 2017

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