Terry Williams - Does he deserve death on Oct 3rd?

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posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:15 AM
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I have started getting these emails about someone wanting me to sign a petition for the commuted sentence of Terry Williams. It's appear as if Terry is sentenced to death on Oct 3rd of this year. I didn't know anything about the case so I looked it up. I won't post the petition here ( and please don't any of you, I believe it's against ATS rules)

This is what I learned. First the write up on the petition to see their side of event from the e-mail I got.


Terry Williams is facing the death penalty in three weeks for killing the man who repeatedly raped him.

But when Terry was convicted, the jury didn't know the whole story. At the time of his trial, jurors say they had no history or background of the sexual assault and abuse that Terry Williams had suffered for years.

Terry was brutally raped for five years, beginning when he was thirteen, by an older man he trusted -- Amos Norwood. When the jury learned his information after the trial, five jurors came forward to say that they no longer supported his death sentence. Even Norwood's widow has forgiven him, and does not want Terry to be executed.

Sign the petition on Change.org asking Governor Tom Corbett of Pennsylvania to stop Terry's execution scheduled on October 3 -- click here to add your name.

"When I heard about Terry Williams' life and his legal case, I knew I had to do what I could to stop the scheduled execution of a man who should not be on death row and would not be on death row had the jury heard all the relevant evidence," said Sue Osthoff, Director of the National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women, a Philadelphia-based organization that assists victims of abuse and trauma who have been charged with crimes related to their abuse.

Like many of the victims of abuse Sue assists, Terry was repeatedly victimized. For Terry, that abuse by older males in his life started when he was only six years old. Despite continuing to suffer sexual abuse for the next twelve years, Terry received no counseling or support to help him deal with the repeated violence he endured. In fact, some of the people who were supposed to help were the ones who actually preyed on him.

None of this information was presented to the jurors during Terry's sentencing; had it been, Terry would not be on death row.

The public outcry for Terry's clemency is growing. A broad coalition of people has joined the jurors and victim's widow in asking that Terry’s sentence be commuted from death to life. Those calling for Terry’s life to be spared include a growing list of child advocates, victims' rights advocates, former prosecutors and judges, law professors, mental health professionals, and faith leaders across Pennsylvania.

Sue Osthoff is very familiar with stories like Terry's. She started this petition because she believes that if the jury had all of the evidence, they would not have sentenced Terry to death.

Join Sue in calling on Governor Corbett to spare Terry Williams' life for killing the man who raped him.


Now information from Wikipedia - which is supposed to be impartial.


Murders of Hamilton and Norwood

In January, 1984, Williams stabbed to death Herbert Hamilton, a 50-year-old resident of West Philadelphia. Williams was a 17-year-old at the time of the murder. Williams lured Hamilton to bed, then stabbed him over 20 times and beat him with a baseball bat.[1] Six months later, Williams, then 18, and Marc Draper convinced Amos Norwood to go to a cemetery, where they beat him to death with a tire iron and then hid the body behind some tombstones. Williams later returned and set the body on fire.[2] Williams took Norwood's car, along with cash and credit cards he stole from the body, and drove to Atlantic City with Draper and Ronald Rucker.[1][2]
Arrest and trial

After the use of Norwood's calling card led police to Rucker, who in turn implicated Williams and Draper.[2] Draper was arrested on July 20, 1984. During questioning, he gave a full confession to the police.[2] A search was conducted of Williams residence, and Norwood's jacket was found. Williams surrendered to the police on July 23, 1984 and although Draper was in protective custody, was able to send several letters urging Draper to change his story. Draper instead turned the letters over to the police.[2]

Williams was convicted of third-degree murder in the death of Hamilton and was sentenced to 27 years, and was convicted of first-degree murder in the death of Norwood and sentenced to death.[1]



The questions I put to ATS are;

1) Should the alleged sex abuse ( not proven ever in court that I know of ) have been allowed in his defense to the jurors at the time?

2) Does the sex abuse matter at all in this case?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My personal take on it, Abuse or not, this man killed 2 men, one stabbed over 20 times then some months later he and an accomplice committed pre-meditated murder of another man. I believe this man is guilty to the full extent of the law and deserves the death penalty.

I think the sex abuse factor could have played a part in the first murder but since it was pre-meditated, not in the second. At no time did Terry go to the authorities about the alleged sex abuse. It looks like to me sex abuse or not, Terry made a sane conscience decision to kill two people for the possible purpose of revenge.

What do you think?




posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:26 AM
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That's why I don't agree with the death penalty. You know how many people have been fried, only later it was discovered that they were infact innocent the whole time? They should at worst have life in prison. And in all honesty even that doesn't solve anything. They should have a system that reforms people, and gives them a second chance. What they have now is gladiator school. They go there and they learn from other inmates how to be even worse! They come out more hardened, more knowledgeable about cons, scams, crime, schemes etc etc. and so they go back to a life of crime because they know that, and they weren't rehabilititated, such as given an education or a trade or something that they could use on the outside to make a living. But in any case the death penality is wrong. My understanding is it's just a big tourist attraction now which is why they keep it going. They make big money from the tourists who come to see the death row people. Talk about insane.



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:31 AM
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reply to post by JohnPhoenix
 


I think he should get (life in prison). Hopefully (in any case) he has true remorse and regret for what he did.

Considering....what he went through....as a very young teen....I think explains his anger. He did murder 2 people...so (life in prison) for him I believe is the right thing.



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:40 AM
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If what he says is the truth - he should walk free. Period. As a Survivor of (violent) Childhood Sexual Abuse? He'll be living in prison the rest of his life anyway.

peace



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:42 AM
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reply to post by JohnPhoenix
 

I myself do not think that anyone has the right to take a human life unless in the act of defending your own.
And a government/state sponsored death penalty can only be described as revenge as it certainly does not work as a deterrent.



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:45 AM
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Child abuse history is not relevant when it comes to premeditated murder. That said, life in prison is enough, I dont think he should get the death penalty.



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:46 AM
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Not only do I think he should not be given the death sentence, I think he should be pardoned and allowed to walk free. I also think he should be given a medal for bravery, because he truly rid this world of evil.

But if he is forced to live in prison for the rest of his life, then maybe death is his best option and he'll die in prison anyway. Makes no odds really.

What a horrible world we live in.
edit on 16-9-2012 by Firefly_ because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 05:52 AM
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Originally posted by Firefly_
Not only do I think he should not be given the death sentence, I think he should be pardoned and allowed to walk free. I also think he should be given a medal for bravery, because he truly rid this world of evil.

But if he is forced to live in prison for the rest of his life, then maybe death is his best option and he'll die in prison anyway. Makes no odds really.

What a horrible world we live in.
edit on 16-9-2012 by Firefly_ because: (no reason given)




that is based on a big assumption though, especially about the second murder, is there any evidence this was somehow because the murder victim was an abuser?!



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 06:05 AM
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silo13 and Firefly,

I think your comments are interesting however consider, the sex abuse has never been proven. As far as I know it's just his word against The State. Unless this can be proven to be valid, Terry could have been making it all up. This wasn't even corroborated by his buddy who helped him commit the 2nd murder.

We do know for a fact the 2nd murder was pre-meditated. You guys would still let him go free and not even serve life in prison? I cannot understand that rational at all.

Do you guys think abuse then or proof of abuse should be used to keep someone from even being on trial for murder? How do you determine this and how does this negate pre-meditated murder?

Don't you think that terry had a responsibility as a citizen to go to the authorities and get help for his abuse and thus prove the abuse before hand? Because Terry didn't do that, don't you think there is a good chance the sex abuse story is not truthful?



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 06:37 AM
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Murder is murder unless it is self-defense.



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 07:01 AM
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reply to post by r2d246
 

I wasn't aware you could wander into maximum security prisons just to stare like tourists. Are you sure about this?
Each visitor has to be screened and approved ahead of time as a rule.

I agree the death penalty is wrong.

As for the case. Not knowing all the details I don't know if the sex abuse is relevant.
It should be brought up in court in an effort to lessen sentencing. It bears being mentioned. Just because the pervert bastard died doesn't mean he gets to take his dirty little secrets with him.



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 09:54 AM
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reply to post by JohnPhoenix
 



I think your comments are interesting however consider, the sex abuse has never been proven.


Which is why I stated - IF what he says is true.


Don't you think that terry had a responsibility as a citizen to go to the authorities and get help for his abuse and thus prove the abuse before hand?


Again, IF what he claims is true - then his abuse started when he was very young. From there you'd have to understand the mechanisms of child abuse - especially on a young boy - to realize how incredible your question is.

Once again - IF what he says is true? My opinion remains the same. He stopped the abuse. It ended in another mans' death. Done deal - he should be released.

peace


edit on 16-9-2012 by silo13 because: bbc quote fix



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 07:01 PM
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reply to post by silo13
 


Would you please answer these questions?

I'll start with the first one again and expound on the idea. The purpose being is i really want to understand your mindset and see if you have a really valid reason for believing as you do. It would seem that you are one of the people who would sign such a petition for terry, and i want to understand why.

Do you guys think abuse then or proof of abuse should be used to keep someone from even being on trial for murder? How do you determine this and how does this negate pre-meditated murder?

You seen to indicate that If True, the act of having been abused relinquishes this person from any responsibility of his murderous actions, and that they should all simply go free with no sentence for his/her crime. How do you determine that said person has been abused to the extent to absolve them of their crimes?

How do you apply this even in the case of premeditaded murder?

What exactly about the abuse makes the person non guilty of murder?



posted on Sep, 16 2012 @ 11:32 PM
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Originally posted by violet
reply to post by r2d246
 

I wasn't aware you could wander into maximum security prisons just to stare like tourists. Are you sure about this?
Each visitor has to be screened and approved ahead of time as a rule.

I agree the death penalty is wrong.

As for the case. Not knowing all the details I don't know if the sex abuse is relevant.
It should be brought up in court in an effort to lessen sentencing. It bears being mentioned. Just because the pervert bastard died doesn't mean he gets to take his dirty little secrets with him.




I haven't bothered to look it up. But about 5 years ago I read some book. They said something to the effect that going to see them was sort of becoming the new adventure tourism of sorts. So the tourists bring the inmates cakes and stuff like that. But they have to pay a significant amount to get on the tour. A few hundred bucks at least I'd imagine. It's nuts.



posted on Sep, 17 2012 @ 02:03 AM
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reply to post by JohnPhoenix
 

I’ll try to answer your questions as I appreciate your asking without judging.


Do you guys think abuse then or proof of abuse should be used to keep someone from even being on trial for murder? How do you determine this and how does this negate pre-meditated murder?

Do I believe proof of abuse should keep someone from even being on trial for murder?

Yes, and no.

- If a victim of childhood sexual abuse - at any point during an attack fights back and kills their abuser there should be a trial to comply with the law and the trial should end in exoneration.

- If a victim of childhood sexual abuse kills their abuser without the provocation of an attack? This gets a little more complicated but again in most cases (if not all) my ‘vote’ would be for an acquittal.

Arguably, there’s no crime that produces more long lasting and devastating effects on a human than childhood rape/abuse. There’s no way to regain normalcy again. Ever. I’ll not go into the short and long term repercussions of childhood rape but if I was asked ‘What is a punishment that fits the crime?’ - My answer would be - death. Simple. (Again, with undisputed proof of said abuse).


You seen to indicate that If True, the act of having been abused relinquishes this person from any responsibility of his murderous actions, and that they should all simply go free with no sentence for his/her crime. How do you determine that said person has been abused to the extent to absolve them of their crimes?

- Does it relinquish them of responsibility? No. But they should not be victimized again for ‘ending’ their abuse.

- How do we determine? We can’t. Only the victim can determine that. The ‘gray areas’ of childhood abuse is vast and foggy. For one child being touched inappropriately can and does cause lifelong damage, devastation. For another? Another may simply grimace at the unpleasant memory of their dirty old Uncle Perve.

Then there’s rape and torture, etc.

My point? No one has the right to ‘judge’ the effects of this particular crime other than the person who has to live with them - for the rest of their life I might add. That’s something no one should ever forget. Being a victim of Childhood Sexual Abuse is a life sentence. And that’s an awful long time. And for what? For being nothing but a child. For being nothing but innocent. Think about that a minute.


How do you apply this even in the case of premeditated murder?

As distasteful as this will be let me draw a picture.

The abuser will offer to watch over the victim - knowing the second he/she is left alone with the victim rape will commence. That’s premeditated. The abuser often will act on the spur of the moment, but in the majority of cases there is premeditation of the crime.

The victim? The victim is a CHILD. How does a CHILD fight a premeditated rape? How does a CHILD fight at all? So, in the turn of the tables as the child matures the child hides a knife under his/her pillow and one of those nights the abuser gets stuck like the pig that he/she is. That is also premeditated. But it’s JUST!

The point I’m struggling to make is this. The victim in this case is a CHILD. Premeditation after the fact? To finally commit the act of ‘defending’ oneself, even later? Oh well. Sucks to be the abuser doesn’t it. Too bad, they’re dead.

I can only hope the ‘civilized’ world comes to terms with Adult Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse with an open mind (equaling true justice) and the sooner the better. Especially before another child/adult victim is unjustly victimized by the system that failed to protect them in the first place.


What exactly about the abuse makes the person non guilty of murder?

Oh, they’re still guilty of murder, but in my way of thinking? It’s called ‘justifiable homicide’ premeditated or not. Justifiable all the way baby.

peace
edit on 17-9-2012 by silo13 because: structure



posted on Sep, 19 2012 @ 10:52 PM
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reply to post by silo13
 


Thank you for explaining your point of view.






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