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Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row 

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Old 11-18-2011, 07:17 PM
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Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A man convicted in the 1998 murder of a 9-year-old boy was found hanging in his death row prison cell on Thursday in an apparent suicide at a Northern California prison, officials said.

Brandon Wilson, 33, was pronounced dead at San Quentin State Prison, according to Terry Thornton, a spokeswoman for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Wilson did not share his cell with another inmate. Authorities did not immediately release details on how he might have hung himself.

A San Diego County jury sentenced Wilson to death in 1999 for murdering 9-year-old Matthew Cecchi the previous year in a park restroom in Oceanside, California.

Wilson is the 19th death row inmate to commit suicide since California reinstated capital punishment in 1978, according to the Department of Corrections.

That means more condemned inmates have died of suicide than the 13 prisoners who have been executed in the state since 1978, prison officials said. There are 719 inmates on death row in California.

(Reporting by Emmett Berg: Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Cynthia Johnston)

http://news.yahoo.com/condemned-chil...014521229.html

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Old 11-18-2011, 07:30 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

i don't know how many of you are aware, but Matthew Checci's murder is why we now have same sex bathrooms in san diego, ca. even malls began offering this. i never let my son go into a public restroom alone until he was 13 i think. this murder made us all that afraid here in san diego. in fact, not one mother ever gave me a single look for it, we all knew why my preteen son was in the bathroom with me. Matthew's death in all it's gory detail has never left our minds since the night it happened.


Missing and Exploited Children Site
Erika Lyn Smith
BellaOnline's Missing and Exploited Children Editor

The Matthew Cecchi Public Safety Act

How old before a child can go to the bathroom by his or herself? No, this is not a potty training question for new moms, but rather a safety question raised by all parents at one time or another. I ask this question in relation to a child using a public bathroom by himself or herself when out with the opposite sex parent. This is a difficult topic for parents and caregivers. Most people never give an opposite sexed baby or toddler under the age of five a second thought when accompanied by a parent or sibling into an opposite sex bathroom. Yet, what about boys ages 6-10 who are out with their mother or other female family member, often they receive an unwelcome glance or comment from those who may not understand a parent’s concern in sending a young boy alone into a men’s room.

As a single mom of a 2 children, this is a concern I have dealt with for many years. My youngest child is a boy. His sister is older than he is by four years. Our family rule, no child goes to the public bathroom alone; they go together or with a safe adult. This rule is especially true for places like movie theatres, large shopping stores or malls, fast food places, and children’s fun places. The only exception to the rule is when mom can see the bathroom directly from where she is at the time, for instance in a family restaurant.

My son has at times expressed difficulty in understanding why he has to go to the girl’s bathroom, unless there is a family bathroom. A family bathroom for those who may be unfamiliar with the concept is an oversized public restroom with one or sometimes two toilets, a sink, and a changing facility where an entire family of 3, 4, or 5 can easily be accommodated allowing everyone to use the facilities and remain safely together. Family restrooms are commonly found in large busy public places such as airports and large malls. Family restrooms came about in the late 1990’s, partially in response to the horrific murder of nine year old Matthew Cecchi Oceanside, California in 1998.

Matthew, his mother, and Matthew’s three year old brother were attending a family function at an Oceanside campground on November 14. That night Gail Gerhard Matthew’s aunt stood outside when Matthew went into the beach’s public bathroom. Twenty year old, Brandon Wilson followed Matthew into the restroom, exiting a short time later, and walking right past Matthew’s aunt. Matthew’s aunt grew concerned when Matthew did not come out of the restroom, and told police she entered the restroom to find her nephew dying on the bathroom floor.

Matthew Cecchi was drowning in his own blood. There was nothing anyone could do to help Matthew, although many tried desperately to revive him and stop the bleeding from his wound. Matthew’s mother would tell jurors how she softly rubbed her son’s hair as he died that night on the restroom floor. The coroner would testify that Matthew died slowly; painfully aware of had happened to him in the final seconds before Brandon Wilson slashed his throat. A family reunion a time of coming together became a family tragedy, a family’s nightmare.

Brandon Wilson initially avoided capture for several days, until he attacked another woman in Los Angeles. Brandon Wilson confessed openly to killing “that little boy.” He later tried to blame his actions on being high on LSD, stating the voice of God told him to kill a child. Brandon Wilson claimed he was guilty by reason of insanity. The jurors were not willing to accept this defense and at the age of 21, Brandon Wilson was found guilty, and sentenced to death. He currently sits on Death row in San Quentin prison. Brandon Wilson has stated he would do exactly what he did all over again if given the chance. There was never any remorse shown.

After Matthew's murder, District 3, Chair woman, Pamela Slater, created the Matthew Cecchi Public Safety Act, which allows the parks division to plan for family restrooms in all renovated or newly constructed county parks in San Diego. Family restrooms, or unisex restrooms, not only assist parents with small children in providing a safe environment during times of travel and outings, they also provide disabled families a way to assist an opposite sexed family member who may be unable to toilet completely independently. Thankfully this appears to be a continuing trend.

http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art28027.asp

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Old 11-18-2011, 07:37 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

Killer who brutally murdered boy, 9, in public restroom hangs himself in death row cell

By Daily Mail Reporter

Last updated at 9:03 PM on 18th November 2011

A convicted murderer who brutally stabbed a nine-year-old boy in a public restroom in 1998 has killed himself in his death row cell.

Brandon Wilson, 33, a drifter from Wisconsin, Ohio, was found hanging inside in his cell in San Quentin State Prison, California on Thursday.

His death is 13 years to the week that he attacked Matthew Cecchi in a restroom in Oceanside, California while the boy's aunt waited outside.

Killer: Brandon Wilson, left, was sentenced to death for killing Matthew Cecchi. He was found dead in his San Quentin State Prison cell on Thursday

Wilson had been camping when he felt ‘the time had come to kill a person’, according to a confession statement read in court.

He followed the youngster, who was on a family reunion, to the bathroom after watching him in a nearby playground.

Wilson slit his throat with a hunting knife and stabbed him five times in the back as the little boy stood at a urinal.

When his aunt grew concerned that Matthew had not come out, she went inside and found him bleeding to death on the bathroom floor.

At his arraignment, the then-20-year-old said: ‘I'm guilty, I did it. I did it. I killed him. I killed the little boy.’

But he showed no remorse and said he would 'do it again in a second if I had the chance'.

During his trial in San Diego, he asked the jury to ‘execute me’.

He pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity and claimed God had ordered him to kill Matthew.

He was convicted and sentenced to death in 1999.

Wilson was also serving a sentence of life in prison for the attempted murder of a woman he had stabbed in Los Angeles two days after killing Cecchi.

Police arrested Wilson after he stabbed the woman on her way to work in Hollywood.

Wilson had let her run away, before chasing her and stabbing her several more times until her co-workers pulled him off.

Wilson was found hanged in his cell in San Quentin Prison. He is the 19th death row inmate to commit suicide in California since 1978

If Brandon Wilson had not committed suicide, he would have been killed by lethal injection in a chamber.

A prison spokeswoman said Wilson was found hanging inside his cell and pronounced dead at 6:47 a.m. He was alone in his single-person cell, she added.

He is the 19th death row inmate to commit suicide since California reinstated capital punishment in 1978, according to the Department of Corrections.

That means more condemned inmates have died of suicide than the 13 prisoners who have been executed in the state since 1978. There are currently 719 inmates on death row in California.

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Old 11-18-2011, 07:38 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

perhaps what we need to do is to put a stool and rope into every death row cell as an option. we might take care of the long appeals process and save ourselves some money.

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Old 11-18-2011, 07:45 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

OCEANSIDE: Cecchi's memorial continues to draw hundreds

by JO MORELAND North County Times staff writer | Posted: Friday, November 20, 1998 4:49 pm

OCEANSIDE -- The family of slain 9-year-old Matthew Cecchi quietly added its own remembrance Thursday to an Oceanside Harbor memorial site near where he was killed.

Flowers, candles, cards, notes, stuffed animals, toys, candles, signs, drawings and other touching items now overflow from among three tall palm trees near the North Jetty public restroom where Matt died Saturday night, his throat cut while his aunt waited outside.

As the sea breeze gently blows from the nearby Pacific Ocean, the site draws a constant stream of people who quietly look, pray and cry, while some hug their children.

"You can't talk to the family, and you want some kind of closure," said Leslie Steele of Oceanside. "It kind of touches home when you spend the day (at the beach) and your kids go to the restroom. It could have been our kids."

She and her daughters, Sierra, 11, and Samantha, 8, brought a bouquet. Vehicles constantly drove by, some stopping. Hundreds of people have paid their respects.

A public candlelight memorial vigil will be held at 5:30 p.m. Saturday near the restroom in the 1400 block of North Pacific Street. The city is providing a stage, sound equipment and personnel. Harbor area parking fees will be suspended from 4 to 10 p.m.

"I hope he's having a good life up in heaven," Samantha said solemnly about Matt.

Sierra said she thinks the man who killed the boy "was a horrible guy, and it was wrong."

Brandon Wilson, a 20-year-old drifter from Wisconsin charged with murder, has openly confessed in court to killing the child.

"It's just terrible," said Karen Estes of Oceanside, leaving a potted plant. "I don't think I'll ever get over this."

The city is daily removing the things from the memorial that might be damaged. All will be sent to the Cecchi family, said Don Hadley, city director of Harbor and Beaches.

They include an old mitt with a ball in memory of the slain child who loved baseball, handmade crosses, cards drawn by San Rafael Elementary School children. There were also rosaries and other gifts from the heart.

Eventually the restroom will be demolished and replaced at a nearby site as part of the Harbor Beach Improvement Program, Hadley said. The department has been talking with people about possibly having a permanent memorial for Matt, perhaps benches.

As yet another press conference was held at the palms Thursday afternoon within the sound of the surf, Matt's's relatives quietly placed a simple large white Styrofoam heart and quickly left.

Wreathed in flowers, pictures of the boy and cards, it was dotted with bright red hearts. Trailing ribbons fluttered from a huge yellow bow.

Police spokeswoman Laura Reinsimar read a statement from Matt's mother, Sharon Cecchi, who is grieving privately.

"He was a precious boy, so wonderful, loving and generous," Cecchi wrote.

She thanked police for their kindness, their thorough investigation and for all the support and prayers from families throughout North County. Many have contributed to the Cecchi trust funds.

"On Tuesday, I was escorted by Detective Bill Robards to the (memorial) scene and was deeply touched by all the flowers, gifts, and cards for Matt and our family," Matt's mother wrote. "I saw the picture the children drew of the angels, the angel candle; Matt was an angel."

Community support has been a tremendous source of comfort in an empty time, Cecchi noted.

"Matt will always be remembered for the precious boy that he was, and I can only take comfort in knowing that he is now with God, watching over his mommy, daddy and little brother," the Oroville mother wrote.

The family's wreath included a card of appreciation for the public response.

"Thank you so much for caring enough to stop by and remember our son Matt," it says.

Several people cried as they read the cards on the wreath from Mommy, Daddy and Matt's little brother.

"My dear Matty, I love you," Sharon Cecchi's card said. "I hope you know how much I really love you. My love for you will only grow stronger. You were my best friend (and) such a big part of my life.

"I know one day we'll be together again. I loved every minute of the nine years with you."

http://www.nctimes.com/news/local/oc...670982477.html

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Old 11-18-2011, 08:58 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

Let them hang themselves!

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Old 11-18-2011, 09:31 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

Damn, I saw a two-hour program about this guy a few years ago. He was a real lunatic: made it seem like Satan had made him commit the act. I wonder if Satan made him hang himself. Oh well. I'm not saddened by the news.

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Old 11-18-2011, 10:08 PM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

Wish he would have been beaten to death!
Poor child, R.I.P little angel

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Old 11-19-2011, 12:54 AM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

I can't believe this monster wasn't gassed a long time ago. This is an old case! And one of the most brutal I've heard of. Good riddance.

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Old 11-19-2011, 01:13 AM
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Re: Condemned Child Killer Hangs Self on California Death Row

california is a land of liberal fruits and nuts. we might have a death penalty, but appeals can go on for as long as 20 or more, the ACLU greatly inhibits the process, as well as other organizations. i came of age to vote in 1978, even at the tender age of 18 the death penalty was a definite yes vote for me.


San Diego 10News Examines California's Death Row Policies
Felicia Kit
I-Team Producer

POSTED: 10:45 am PST March 2, 2009
UPDATED: 5:51 pm PST March 2, 2009


Death row is home to the worst murderers in the state, including men like Scott Erskine, who raped, tortured and murdered two South Bay boys who were riding their bikes near the Otay River.

"You know people don't understand that it's not so much he's dead, like the way he died. That is what -- that's what I can't let go," says Maria Keever. She is haunted by the suffering her 13-year-old boy endured at the hands of Erskine. It's been 16 years since Charlie Keever's death, and the pain is still constant.

"You just get used to it. You just don't know what is normal anymore," said Keever.

Erskine's unspeakable crime and other chilling murders are the reason 72 percent of San Diegans polled by 10News support the death penalty -- reinstated by California voters in 1978.

Every year, roughly 20 criminals get sent to death row. But for the majority, it's a sentence in name only.

"It's just a lie. It's just for the birds, the death penalty, because they don't do nothing about it," says Keever.

The numbers are shocking. There are 680 inmates on California's death row. It's the largest in the nation. So far, of all the inmates who have died on death row, only 18% were executed. Far more -- 82 percent -- died from natural or other causes.

This month, Thomas Edwards died on death row of natural causes. He moved into San Quentin State Prison 22 years ago, for shooting and killing 12-year-old Vanessa Iberri at a campground near San Juan Capistrano. Her father, Joe, kept hoping for an execution that never came.

"I didn't know the way the defense works and there's so many appeals involved in this that I was just astonished," says Iberri. "Enough is enough, I mean how much longer is this going to go on?"

Death is the ultimate punishment the state can give. With a life at stake, there are seemingly endless appeals that meander through the courts for years.

"How do we make this system work better? How can we make it so it's a very fair and effective system, but also one that goes a little faster than two to three decades for an execution to happen?" asks Dan Lamborn, Chief Deputy District Attorney for the County of San Diego.

Lamborn prosecuted Cleophus Prince, who terrorized San Diego when he stabbed six women to death in the 1990's. Fifteen years later, Prince is still in the first half of the appeals process.

"It takes us five years just to get a defense attorney appointed on the appellate side -- five years for that, which is ridiculous," says Lamborn.

Gary Schons, Senior Assistant Attorney General, says the massive amount of records involved in death cases is another reason for the long process. One brief for a San Diego inmate took a defense attorney five years to write.

"Not only is justice delayed, justice denied, but also the mere passage of time always serves as a factor that can endanger obtaining ultimate justice in these cases," says Schons.

Of the 40 death row inmates convicted in San Diego County, Bernard Hamilton has been in San Quentin the longest - 28 years. He murdered and mutilated a Mesa College student, who was also a wife and mom with two baby boys.

"On Monday, the California Supreme Court affirmed the last penalty phase aspect of his case," says Schons. "So we're 30 years out from the murder, 14 years out from the retrial of the penalty phase, and we're only halfway home."

In a report last year, the California Commission on the Fair Adminstration of Justice called the death penalty system "dysfunctional" and suggested changes saying, "Doing nothing would be the worst possible course." They also looked at the price tag: The death penalty system costs the state $137 million dollars per year. Replacing death with life imprisonment without parole would cost $11.5 million per year.

"The difference is enormous," says Jeff Chinn of the California Innocence Project at California Western School of Law

A coalition called "Taxed to Death" includes the ACLU and California Innocence Project. They suggest life sentences without parole as a cost-effective fix to a broken death penalty system.

"We're talking about significant immediate gains that would be beneficial to everyone and would free up resources to spend on all of these other issues -- social services and fire protection and police protection that we're right now worried about cutting," says Andrea Guerrero, ACLU Field and Policy Director.

Not everyone agrees that we should do away with capital punishment.

"I do believe in the death penalty. I know that examples can be set and justice will be served," says Iberri.

"There are some atrocious crimes. Why should we punish one murderer who killed somebody during a robbery, the same as somebody who rapes and kills six women? There has to be a difference in punishment there," says Lamborn.

The only agreement is that something must be done. Having a death penalty in name only cheats taxpayers, crime victims and families left traumatized by the crime and lack of punishment.

"First I had to wait eight years to find him, then had to wait another two years to go to court. And now I'm still waiting. And I think I will die waiting," says Keever.

This month, Maryland became the fifth state in recent months to propose getting rid of the death penalty to cut costs. Here in California, the governor has not suggested that, even though no one has been executed for three years, because of challenges to the state's lethal injection process.

http://www.10news.com/news/18834939/detail.html

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