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PORTSIDE  May 2012, Week 3

PORTSIDE May 2012, Week 3

Subject:

The wrong Carlos: how Texas sent an innocent man to his death

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Portside Moderator <[log in to unmask]>

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Date:

Wed, 16 May 2012 23:50:27 -0400

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The wrong Carlos: how Texas sent an innocent man to his
death

Groundbreaking Columbia law school study sets out in
shocking detail the flaws that led to Carlos DeLuna's
execution in 1989

[For the full report, go to this url -- moderator:
http://www3.law.columbia.edu/hrlr/ltc/]


Ed Pilkington in New York

guardian.co.uk, Monday 14 May 2012 23.00 EDT

'Los tocayos Carlos' - Hernandez and DeLuna looked so
alike that they were sometimes mistaken for twins.
Photographs: Corpus Christi police department/DeLuna
family/Hernandez family/Texas dept of criminal
justice/Corpus Christi Caller Times
A few years ago, Antonin Scalia, one of the nine justices
on the US supreme court, made a bold statement. There has
not been, he said, "a single case - not one - in which it
is clear that a person was executed for a crime he did not
commit. If such an event had occurred ... the innocent's
name would be shouted from the rooftops."

Scalia may have to eat his words. It is now clear that a
person was executed for a crime he did not commit, and his
name - Carlos DeLuna - is being shouted from the rooftops
of the Columbia Human Rights Law Review. The august
journal has cleared its entire spring edition, doubling
its normal size to 436 pages, to carry an extraordinary
investigation by a Columbia law school professor and his
students.

The book sets out in precise and shocking detail how an
innocent man was sent to his death on 8 December 1989,
courtesy of the state of Texas. Los Tocayos Carlos: An
Anatomy of a Wrongful Execution, is based on six years of
intensive detective work by Professor James Liebman and 12
students.

Starting in 2004, they meticulously chased down every
possible lead in the case, interviewing more than 100
witnesses, perusing about 900 pieces of source material
and poring over crime scene photographs and legal
documents that, when stacked, stand over 10ft high.

What they discovered stunned even Liebman, who, as an
expert in America's use of capital punishment, was well
versed in its flaws. "It was a house of cards. We found
that everything that could go wrong did go wrong," he
says.

Carlos DeLuna was arrested, aged 20, on 4 February 1983
for the brutal murder of a young woman, Wanda Lopez. She
had been stabbed once through the left breast with an 8in
lock-blade buck knife which had cut an artery causing her
to bleed to death.

From the moment of his arrest until the day of his death
by lethal injection six years later, DeLuna consistently
protested he was innocent. He went further - he said that
though he hadn't committed the murder, he knew who had. He
even named the culprit: a notoriously violent criminal
called Carlos Hernandez.

for the rest of this story, go to
http://slatest.slate.com/posts/2012/05/15/carlos_deluna_columbia_law_professor_james_liebman_details_wrongful_execution_.html?from=rss/&wpisrc=newsletter_slatest

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