FEATURED POST

2018 Death Penalty report: Saudi Arabia’s False Promise

Image
With crown prince Mohammed bin Salman at the helm, 2018 was a deeply violent and barbaric year for Saudi Arabia, under his de facto leadership.
PhotoDeera Square is a public space located in front of the Religious Police building in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in which public executions (usually by beheading) take place. It is sometimes known as Justice Square and colloquially called Chop Chop Square. After Friday prayers, police and other officials clear the area to make way for the execution to take place. After the beheading of the condemned, the head is stitched to the body which is wrapped up and taken away for the final rites.
This year execution rates of 149 executions, shows an increase from the previous year of three executions, indicating that death penalty trends are soaring and there is no reversal of this trend in sight.
The execution rates between 2015-2018 are amongst the highest recorded in the Kingdom since the 1990s and coincide with the ascension of king Salman to the t…

Execution Delayed in Pennsylvania for Notorious Killer Raghunandan Yandamuri


Raghunandan Yandamuri
Raghunandan Yandamuri, the 1st Indian American on death row, was not put to death by lethal injection on Feb. 23, his scheduled execution date, as the state of Pennsylvania has a moratorium on the death penalty since 2015. 

Pennsylvania District Court Judge Petrese Tucker issued a stay of execution for Yandamuri Jan. 16, based on a request by the killer, who - during court proceedings - told a judge he wanted to die for the crimes he had committed, and asked that the death sentence be imposed upon him. He received two death sentences, which he later appealed but lost last April. 

Amy Worden, press secretary for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, told India-West that another warrant would have to be signed for the execution to proceed. "For now he remains on the capital case unit," she said. 

The Pennsylvania Board of Pardons would have to determine if Yandamuri's death sentence can be commuted to a life sentence, said Worden. 

Sue McNaughton, communications director, Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, told PTI in January that the likelihood of Yandamuri being executed is slim. She noted that Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has said he would issue a reprieve if a court did not grant the stay. 

Pennsylvania has not carried out any executions in the past 20 years. Yandamuri is incarcerated at the Greene State Correctional Institution, a maximum security prison in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania. 

In 2014, Yandamuri was sentenced to die by lethal injection for murdering 10-month-old Saanvi Venna and her 61-year-old grandmother, Satyavathi Venna. A jury deliberated for just 3 hours before declaring Yandamuri guilty (see India-West story here: http://bit.ly/2DhvWch). 

After he was arrested in 2012, the killer provided a chilling account of how he entered the Vennas' apartment while Saanvi's parents, Venkata and Latha, were at work. He fatally stabbed Satyavathi - who was attempting to protect her granddaughter - before kidnapping the baby, which he hoped to use to obtain $50,000 in ransom from her parents. 

Yandamuri and his wife Komali were friends with the Vennas and lived in the same apartment building in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania. 

After kidnapping Saanvi, Yandamuri covered her mouth and stuffed the baby in a suitcase, then left her at a basement gym in the apartment building, where she suffocated to death. During a frantic 3-day search by police and the local community, Yandamuri handed out missing baby flyers. 

The H-1B tech worker was arrested later that week at a local gambling casino. Earlier India-West stories reported that Yandamuri had accrued $35,000 in gambling debts and had filed for bankruptcy while working in Northern California. His wife Komali was pregnant at the time of the murders. She has returned to India.

Source: indiawest.com, February, 2018


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


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



"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

Most Viewed (Last 7 Days)

Abolish the death penalty in Colorado

Executed for being gay: 13 nations threaten it, 4 do it.

Texas corrections officer dies by suicide at Huntsville prison

Ohio’s Governor Stopped an Execution Over Fears It Would Feel Like Waterboarding

Sri Lanka: Applications sought for hangman’s job

Eisenhower denies the Rosenbergs clemency, Feb. 11, 1953

Singapore: Drug trafficker found to be a mere courier, but apex court upholds death penalty

Iran: Three Inmates Executed In Raja’i Shahr And Ardebil Prisons

Secrecy and the Death Penalty in the United States

Egypt executes three political prisoners after ‘unfair trial’