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“River of Fire”: In New Memoir, Sister Helen Prejean Reflects on Decades of Fighting Executions

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The Trump administration is moving ahead with plans to resume the death penalty after a more than 15-year moratorium. This week Attorney General William Barr proposed fast-tracking executions in mass murder cases, and last month ordered the execution of five death row prisoners beginning in December. The federal government has executed just three people since 1963 — the last being in 2003. The death penalty is widely condemned by national governments, international bodies and human rights groups across the world. Experts say capital punishment does not help deter homicides and that errors and racism in the criminal justice system extend to those sentenced to death. We speak with Sister Helen Prejean, a well-known anti-death-penalty activist who began her prison ministry over 30 years ago. She is the author of the best-selling book “Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty,” which was turned into an Academy Award-winning film starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn. …

Man convicted in 4 killings set for execution in Alabama

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – A man convicted of murder in a quadruple killing after a dispute over a pickup truck is set to be executed in Alabama.

Forty-one-year-old Michael Brandon Samra is scheduled to receive a lethal injection Thursday evening at the state prison in Atmore.

Samra and friend Mark Duke were convicted of killing Duke's father, the father's girlfriend and the woman's two elementary-age daughters in March 1997. 

Evidence showed Duke planned the killings because his father wouldn't let him use his pickup.

Duke and Samra both were originally sentenced to death, but Duke's sentence was overturned because he was 16 at the time of the killings. 

Samra was 19 at the time.

Another execution is scheduled Thursday in Tennessee.

Source: Associated Press, Staff, May 16, 2019


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

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