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Nathaniel Woods executed in Alabama after Supreme Court denies stay

Nathaniel Woods executed in Alabama after Supreme Court denies stay

first_imgsimpson33/iStock(ATMORE, Ala.) — The controversial execution of Nathaniel Woods was carried out late Thursday in Alabama just minutes after the Supreme Court denied a temporary stay, issued only hours earlier.Woods was pronounced dead at 9:01 p.m. local time, according to the Alabama Department of Corrections.Advocates had argued Woods, who was convicted in the murder of three police officers in 2004, did not directly take part in the slayings and should have his execution delayed.The decision came after Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey reviewed the letter requesting a reprieve from the death sentence, but said she would allow the execution to proceed.“Governor Ivey does not presently intend to exercise her powers of commutation or reprieve in this case,” general counsel William G. Parker Jr. wrote. “While Governor Ivey reserves the right to grant clemency at any time before an execution is carried out, she has determined, based on her review of the complete record, including the matters presented in your letter, that clemency for Mr. Woods at this hour is unwarranted.”Woods, 44, was killed by lethal injection at the William C. Holman Correctional Facility in Atmore, Alabama.“The fight is far from over. Nathaniel is an innocent man, and that will always be the truth. We are not giving up,” the family said in a statement provided to ABC News.Supporters were calling for Ivey to grant a reprieve. As of Thursday morning, Ivey offered no sign that she would intervene in Williams’ case and it appeared the execution would go as planned.But late Thursday, Supreme Court Judge Clarence Thomas issued a temporary stay in the minutes leading up to the execution of Woods, who was convicted of capital murder in the 2004 killings of three Birmingham, Alabama, police officers.He already requested his final meal of sweet potatoes, spinach, chicken patty, chicken leg quarter, cooked apples, fries, two oranges and an orange flavored drink, according to a statement from the Alabama Department of Corrections. However, he only took one bite of the chicken and left the rest of his meal untouched, the statement read.Woods also made calls earlier that day to his father, sister, daughter and mother, as well as friends. His imam was expected to be the only person present at the execution.At news of the temporary stay, the son of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., who had joined a chorus of calls to halt the execution, praised the move.“Amazing news!! The Supreme Court has issued a stay of execution for Nathaniel Woods!! Great work everyone!” Martin Luther King III wrote on Twitter.Following the execution, King called it a “mockery of justice.”A spokeswoman with the Alabama Department of Corrections told ABC News that the execution warrant did not run out until 11:59 p.m., meaning they had until then to carry out the execution once the court decided to lift the temporary stay.On Tuesday, King sent a letter to Ivey, a Republican, reading, “I stand with hundreds of thousands of Americans across Alabama and the nation, pleading with you not to execute Nathaniel Woods.”In his letter, King, who was born in Alabama, told Ivey her state was “set to kill a man who is very likely innocent.”King told Fox News Thursday, “If a person is innocent, they should not be killed in this country. People have been killed and [hanged] for doing nothing. And in this context, if that is the prospect, we ought to at least go through the facts, go through the information, give the system the opportunity to work if it did not work.”As of Thursday afternoon, more than 91,000 people had signed a petition on the website Change.org to stop the execution of Woods, who would become the first person executed in Alabama this year and the 67th since the state reinstated the death penalty in 1976. Ivey noted two Alabama citizens had been executed since 1983 as being accomplices to capital murder.Woods’ alleged accomplice, Kerry Spencer, confessed to being the sole gunman who killed the officers with a high-powered weapon, but separate juries convicted him and Woods of four capital murder charges, including killing the officers in the course of committing another crime.“The state offered the testimony of 39 witnesses at Woods’ capital murder trial, including Officer Michael Collins, 25 other law enforcement officers, and forensic experts,” Ivey wrote in a lengthy statement announcing Woods’ execution. “There is no evidence, and no argument has been made, that Nathaniel Woods tried to stop the gunman from committing these heinous crimes. In fact, he later bragged about his participation in these horrific murders. As such, the jury did not view Woods’ acts as those of an innocent bystander; they believed that he was a fully engaged participant.”Spencer’s trial was held before Woods’ case was heard by a jury, but his execution date has yet to be set.During both trials, prosecutors presented the juries the theory that Woods and Spencer acted in tandem to lure the officers into the apartment to kill them.On June 17, 2004, Birmingham police officers Carlos Owen, Harley Chisholm III and Charles Bennett were shot to death while executing a misdemeanor assault warrant for Woods at a suspected crack house in Birmingham. A fourth officer was also shot, but survived and testified against Woods.A jury convicted Woods in December 2005, and in a nonunanimous verdict of 10-2 recommended a sentence of death.Chisholm’s sister has come out against the execution, saying in a statement to ABC News provided by Wood’s family: “I am writing to express my sincere wishes for Governor Ivey to stop the execution of Nathaniel Woods. I am the sister of Harley Chisholm III. I do not think that Nathaniel is guilty of murder. I urge Governor Ivey to reconsider her decision not to intervene.”“There is no harm in allowing more time for the courts to investigate,” the statement added. “I want the new evidence to be brought forward and evaluated by new attorneys. Please do not move forward with the hasty decision to execute Nathaniel. My conscience will not let me live with this if he dies. I beg you to have mercy on him.”Alabama State Attorney General Steve Marshall said in a statement Wednesday that Woods was “correctly found guilty and sentenced to death by a jury of his peers.”“The only injustice in the case of Nathaniel Woods is that which was inflicted on those four policemen that terrible day in 2004,” Marshall said in the statement.Woods appealed his conviction, arguing his lawyer gave him inadequate representation by misinforming him that he could not be convicted of capital murder as an accomplice and convincing him to reject a plea deal prosecutors offered him of 20 to 25 years in prison, according to court records.“A jury of Mr. Woods’ peers convicted him of four counts of capital murder,” Ivey wrote Thursday night. “In the past 15 years, his conviction has been reviewed at least nine times, and no court has found any reason to overturn the jury’s decision.”Woods’ appeal was denied by the Alabama Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court.In his letter to Ivey, King stated that Woods “has never had a fair trial” and has not gotten the opportunity to present new evidence since his conviction bolstering his claim that Spencer acted alone and that there was never a plan to lure the officers into an ambush.The case has also garnered the attention of celebrities like Kim Kardashian West, who has become an advocate for criminal justice reform. She tweeted Thursday, Woods “is scheduled to be executed in Alabama TONIGHT for murders he did NOT commit. Join the broad coalition- including members of the jury and relatives of the victims – in urging @GovernorKayIvey and @AGSteveMarshall to stay Nate’s execution.”Following Ivey’s inaction, which allowed Woods’ execution to proceed, West said her heart goes out to Woods’ family and those who worked to “save his life.”“This is a tragic example of injustice in the system,” she tweeted. “Nate will die for a crime another man confessed to and says Nate had nothing to do with.”West met with President Donald Trump Wednesday at the White House to talk criminal justice reform along with women the president recently commuted.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Browns close training facility after player tests positive for COVID-19

Browns close training facility after player tests positive for COVID-19

first_img Beau Lund Written by FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailJason Miller/Getty ImagesBy CARMEN COX, ABC News(CLEVELAND) — The Cleveland Browns’ practice facility is shut down for the second consecutive week due to COVID-19.A statement on the Browns website said, “the individual has immediately self-isolated and the Browns facility is closed while contact tracing is being conducted.”On Friday, the team closed its training complex in Berea, Ohio, and placed reserve offensive lineman Chris Hubbard on the reserve/COVID-19 list after he tested positive for the coronavirus, ESPN reports.During the week prior, the Browns closed the facility after Baker Mayfield came into contact with a team staffer who had contracted the virus. Mayfield later received a negative COVID-19 test and returned to practice Wednesday.The Browns are scheduled to host the Philadelphia Eagles next weekend. It’s unclear whether the recent shutdown will impact that game.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.center_img November 16, 2020 /Sports News – National Browns close training facility after player tests positive for COVID-19last_img read more

Developers line up to bid ‘£300m’ for Cutlers Gardens

Developers line up to bid ‘£300m’ for Cutlers Gardens

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

Amaju Pinnick is Corrupt….

Amaju Pinnick is Corrupt….

first_imgAmaju Pinnick NFF President I was therefore not surprised when last week some reports claimed that the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has ordered that the ‘mansions’ built by Pinnick and the 2nd Vice President of the NFF, Shehu Dikko be investigated.Some reports actually claimed that their properties located in Lagos and Abuja respectively are to be forfeited to government! Add that to the allegations that Pinnick and his board members misappropriated 2014 FIFA World Cup grant, including the ‘theft’ of the $650, 000 meant for the Bolivian friendly in Uyo some years ago and other tales of monumental sleaze and you would wonder if Amaju and his co-travelers do anything else apart from stealing money.On a regular basis we are inundated with usually unproved reports of how these men in the NFF have stolen even more than all that there is to steal. It therefore becomes easy to see behind the allegations and arrive at a case of willful attempt at criminalizing all that the NFF does. I am not holding brief for our football governing body but am of the opinion that in churning out limitless allegations of corruption against the NFF, we must be mindful of the harm we eventually will do to our football.We want our football to be sponsored but pray which sponsors will provide money that would be used to build mansions by officials of our football? Those who will bring Amaju down appear not to care if they destroy our football house in the process. My take really is that we must all learn to look at the overall interest of our nation. I no longer like our President Muhammadu Buhari but I am still passionate about the nation he leads. I will never seek to bring Nigeria down because I don’t like the way our President is running our country. If the NFF and its leadership is involved in corrupt practices let’s spend time investigating them and if there are proofs of wrong doing let’s prosecute them after due process has been followed. The wheel of justice grinds slowly but surely and we must allow her space in our affairs.When we talk of corruption we tend to forget that it is a process and to combat corruption we have to look at the process which produces avenues for manipulation and distortion. Information management gives everyone a chance to know what is happening. We all would know when funds are approved and eventually released. We would know what it was used for and what funds have been used for. Money approved for sporting competitions must not be used to sponsor government delegates who eat up a substantial part of the budget.It is a fact that most times budgets are passed with the understanding that a certain per cent must be reserved for National Assembly members who would insist that the operators of the budget must launder the money back to them. Then of course we have government delegations who are often sponsored from funds provided for the welfare of athletes and other participants. From my interactions with sports administrators I know that periodically Assemblymen make financial demands on administrators. The amount of money siphoned through this process is enormous. I think it is this situation that must be remedied by creating a credibly open system that allows everyone to see how money moves.Our new Sports Minister, Sunday Dare being someone from an IT background must attempt to computerise all activities in such a way that everyone can ‘see’ what is going on. Subsequent transparency so created will reduce kitchen talks about corruption.In passing, I would like to say the current board of the NFF has done fairly well and should be encouraged to see out its mandate. From a shaky start, they are treading somewhat surefootedly. Check out the records! Our national football coach, Gernot Rohr, should be assisted to get better. Those who are clamouring for his removal cannot base their clamour on anything relevant to football matters.I believe his contract should be extended till after the 2022 World Cup. Between now and then, his Nigerian understudy who would naturally take over from him should be employed. Leaders in world football from nations with a stable administration give their coaching crew the opportunities to learn from mistakes. We did not do well in the last World Cup in Russia but indications emerging show we should expect to do much better with the experience our coach has gathered.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram By Tayo BalogunThere have always been plots to remove Amaju Pinnick from office as President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF). Those who are/were involved in the plan are from all strata of the football family. There are some journalists, a motley of football administrators, many faceless and baseless people who regard themselves as veritable stakeholders in the affairs of football in the country.And of course there are a few good men who truly believe that Pinnick is not good for our football. Together, this group has been involved in a persistently savage war of attrition. Basically, allegations against him have been that he is corrupt and largely incompetent. Sometimes there are complaints that he is illegally in office. In this regard there have been numerous court cases that have made a mockery of our judicial system.last_img read more

Canada Says it’s Now Easier for Caribbean Nationals to Apply for…

Canada Says it’s Now Easier for Caribbean Nationals to Apply for…

first_imgOTTAWA, Canada (CMC) — Building on a government commitment made earlier this year, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) says it is now easier for foreign nationals, including Caribbean immigrants to apply for temporary and permanent resident status within Canada.On Tuesday, the immigration agency said foreign nationals applying from within Canada for temporary or permanent residence, or to extend or renew their visitor visa or work or study permit, will need to have their fingerprints and photo taken and can do so at any of the 58 designated Service Canada locations across the country.“This means individuals will now save time and money by being able to give their biometrics within Canada,” it said in a statement.It said Canada has collected biometrics (fingerprints and photos) on most foreign nationals applying for temporary or permanent residence since December 31, 2018.“Having biometrics helps immigration officers verify people’s identity, which makes processing applications easier and simplifies entry for legitimate travellers,” IRCC said. “It also makes it easier for officers to stop individuals who pose a risk to the safety and security of Canadians.”IRCC said people can apply online or by paper as they have always done.Applicants who receive a biometrics instruction letter will be able to give their fingerprints and photo at designated Service Canada locations across the country by appointment.IRCC said the appointment must be made in advance through an easy online booking tool at canada.ca/biometrics.It said applicants, including those in Canada who will be travelling outside the country, can also give their biometrics at a visa application centre (VAC) in any country that they are legally allowed to enter.IRCC said Canada has one of the most extensive networks of VACs worldwide, with 160 locations in 108 countries.“Fingerprints and photo collection are recognised as one of the most reliable ways to identify people and are used by more than 70 countries worldwide. We will enhance the efficiency and integrity of the immigration system in Canada,” said Marco E L Mendicino, Canada’s Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.last_img read more