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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…

Ohio: Death-row inmates due in Toledo in ‘near future’

Toledo Correctional Institution
Ohio's Toledo Correctional Institution
Seven months after announcing the move, state prison officials are releasing few details about a transfer of Ohio’s death row inmates to Toledo.

More than 100 prisoners awaiting execution will leave the Chillicothe facility for housing at Toledo Correctional Institution. Executions, however, will continue about 200 miles away in Lucasville.

Ryan Jones, president of the union representing Toledo correctional officers, said administrators told him the new inmates are expected this summer. “They are being very extraordinarily tight-lipped about when the actual move will take place,” Mr. Jones said.

In the meantime, the prison slowly is emptying designated housing after inmates’ terms expire in anticipation of the condemned prisoners’ arrivals, Mr. Jones said.

Mr. Jones said bringing in death-row inmates puts additional stress on corrections officers who already manage prisoners on a wide range of security levels. Officers undoubtedly still will keep residents safe, he said.

“Basically, a prison operates on consistency, routine, and everything being as normal as we can make it,” Mr. Jones said.

The state department picked Toledo because its newer high-security facility is better equipped for inmates with physical and mobility problems.

JoEllen Smith, an Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction spokesman, said in statement Monday she could not release a date or transportation details for “security reasons.”

“The process of moving groups of inmates is both a security and a logistical challenge; however, DRC has a well-developed transportation system for individual, small group, and large group transports,” she said.

Ms. Smith said in October the move between Chillicothe and Toledo would occur “in the near future.”

May figures show 139 inmates on Ohio’s death row, including 11 sentenced in Lucas County, among a statewide prison population of nearly 50,300. Ohio’s annual average cost per inmate is about $26,400.

Source: The Blade, Ryan Dunn, June 6, 2017

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