NYT_Death Penalty

NYT_Death Penalty - Family's Effort to Clear Name Frames...

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Family’s Effort to Clear Name Frames Debate on Executions Ken Light Cameron Todd Willingham lying in his cell in 1994. By JOHN SCHWARTZ Published: October 14, 2010 AUSTIN, Tex. — It was an unusual hearing. The subject at the center of it all, Cameron Todd Willingham, was not present. After being convicted of murdering his three children in a 1991 house fire, he was executed in 2004. Enlarge This Image Mike Graczyk/Associated Press Cameron Todd Willingham was convicted of killing his children in 1991 in this house in Corsicana, Texas.
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Enlarge This Image Jay Janner/American-Statesman Eugenia Willingham talked to reporters on Thursday during a recess in a hearing about her stepson, Mr. Willingham. Enlarge This Image Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman, via Associated Press Johnny Sutton, right, a lawyer, spoke outside the court in Austin, Tex. With him were Stacy Kuykendall, former wife of Cameron Todd Willingham, and her brother Tracy Kuykendall. Members of Mr. Willingham’s family, working with lawyers who oppose the death penalty, had asked for the rare and controversial hearing, held here on Thursday, to investigate whether Mr. Willingham was wrongfully convicted . They argue that the proceeding, known as a court of inquiry, could restore Mr. Willingham’s reputation, a right guaranteed under Texas law, even to the dead. But they also say that the hearing is more than symbolic — it could cast in a new light the Lone Star State’s record on executions. And more broadly, they argue, it is a cautionary tale about the power of flawed science to sway a courtroom, and a glaring injustice that could affect debates over the fairness of the death penalty. That debate has been framed, in part, by a 2006
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NYT_Death Penalty - Family's Effort to Clear Name Frames...

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