Monday, 04 June, 2001
Capital punishment has been much in the news lately, especially with the recent Timothy McVeigh debacle involving the FBI's mishandling of investigation documents. Here in Texas there's the case of Johnny Paul Penry, a mentally retarded man convicted of the 1979 rape and murder of Pamela Carpenter. The United States Supreme Court today overturned his death sentence for the second time. The first sentence was thrown out in 1989.
It probably comes as no surprise that I support capital punishment, especially in cases as clear cut as these two. McVeigh has publicly admitted planting the bomb that killed 169 people in Oklahoma City and withdrew appeals of his sentence; effectively saying "get it over with." Penry has freely admitted planning and executing the rape of Pamela Carpenter, and then killing her so she wouldn't "squeal" on him. This while he was on parole for a previous rape conviction. I have yet to hear a good argument in either case why the sentence should not be carried out immediately.