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Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death 

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Old 08-07-2012, 11:15 PM
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Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

In America they execute mentally handicapped people. A country with such ethical and moral standards makes me sick:

Source Huffington Post
NEW YORK -- Texas authorities executed Marvin Wilson, a 54-year-old death row inmate, on Tuesday night after his attorneys failed to convince state and federal courts that he was mentally retarded and ineligible for the death penalty under a 2002 Supreme Court ruling.

Wilson was declared dead at 6:27 p.m. local time. He cried out to his gathered family members as he expired, Texas officials said.

"Give mom a hug for me and tell her that I love her," Wilson said.

"Take me home, Jesus. Take me home, Lord," he continued. "I ain't left yet, must be a miracle. I am a miracle."

The Supreme Court late in the afternoon rejected without comment a last-ditch appeal by Wilson's lawyers, clearing the way for his death by lethal injection. The appeal cited a 2004 psychological exam that pegged Wilson's IQ at just 61. The Texas benchmark for mental retardation is an IQ of about 70 or less.

"We are gravely disappointed and profoundly saddened that the United States Supreme Court has refused to intervene," said Lee Kovarsky, Wilson's attorney and a law professor at the University of Maryland.

Wilson was convicted in 1994 in the shooting death of Jerry Williams, 21, who had identified him to police as a drug dealer. His accomplice in the crime, Terry Lewis, was given life in prison with the possibility of parole, after Lewis's wife testified that Wilson confessed to pulling the trigger. No forensic evidence or eyewitness testimony established the identity of the shooter.

Wilson maintained that he did not commit the murder, but his defense ultimately hinged on convincing state or federal courts that his diminished mental capacity should exempt him from execution.

School records showed Wilson fared poorly in school, earning Ds and Fs in special education classes, and failing 7th grade. Family members testified that Wilson was called "dummy" and "retard" by other children when he was a boy, and struggled with basic tasks that include tying his shoes, counting money and mowing the lawn.

Texas and federal courts, however, rejected Wilson's claim that he was mentally retarded, siding with prosecutors who argued that his actions showed him to be a street-savvy criminal. Prosecutors also declared that other intelligence tests showed Wilson's IQ was in the low- to mid-70s.

"Wilson created schemes using a decoy to screen his thefts, hustled for jobs in the community, and orchestrated the execution of the snitch, demonstrating inventiveness, drive and leadership," Edward Marshall, a Texas assistant attorney general, said in a statement.

In 2002, the Supreme Court prohibited the execution of the mentally retarded, declaring it cruel and unusual punishment forbidden under the Constitution's 8th Amendment. Those with diminished mental capacity, the court ruled, are less culpable for their crimes than those with normal intellects. The reasoning was nearly identical to the legal argument the court embraced in forbidding the execution of juvenile offenders.

The court left it up to the states to determine who qualified as mentally retarded. In response, the Texas Court for Criminal Appeals, the top state court, cited in a ruling the child-like character "Lennie," from John Steinbeck's classic novel "Of Mice and Men," as its standard of what type of offender should be exempt from execution.

"Most Texas citizens would agree that Steinbeck's Lennie should, by virtue of his lack of reasoning ability and adaptive skills, be exempt from execution," the court found.

Those with more advanced intellects should face execution, regardless of psychological tests indicating mental deficits, the ruling said. The Texas standard has been used repeatedly to justify the execution of those who by clinical benchmarks would typically be judged to suffer from mild mental retardation.

Those standards applied to Wilson, who exhibited serious mental deficits beginning in childhood, family members said.

According to his sister, Wilson sucked his thumb into his 20s. His cousin, Beverly Walters, said Wilson was constantly teased about his intelligence as a boy.

"The other kids in school would always call Marvin dummy," Walters said in 2003.

On Tuesday, the use of Steinbeck's character to support the execution of those with less profound mental deficits was criticized harshly by the author's son.

"Prior to reading about Mr. Wilson's case, I had no idea that the great state of Texas would use a fictional character that my father created to make a point about human loyalty and dedication …. as a benchmark to identify whether defendants with intellectual disability should live or die," Thomas Steinbeck said in a statement.

"I am certain that if my father, John Steinbeck, were here, he would be deeply angry and ashamed to see his work used in this way," Steinbeck said.

Wilson is the seventh person put to death in 2012 by Texas, which has nine more inmates scheduled to die by lethal injection before the end of the year.

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Old 08-08-2012, 01:23 AM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

Because he has an IQ lower than the average he shouldn't be executed? I say FUCK HIM, he killed someone, the person he killed didn't have a choice. Hope he felt the drugs go through his body in the most painful way possible.

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Old 08-08-2012, 01:32 AM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

Honestly, all the "retard", "rough past" and "insane" excuses fail to impress me. On the contrary, if a person "can't help" but be dangerous, they're even more of a threat to public safety. I don't see death penalty as a useful way to teach someone a lesson as they don't live to change their ways, but if guilt is 100% proven, I think killing criminals is the right way to protect the innocent.

Just imagine if this person had been set free? I've dealt with retarded people before, and they do all you tell them to. Knowing there will always be people to take advantage of the stupid, this is extremely dangerous.

One might argue that this guy had about the same evil intent as a guy who kills by accident (car slips, lights cig near gas leak), but otherwise, any murderer who does not act out of reasonable fear for their own life (say your spouse is abusive and police won't remove him), needs to be put to death, for the sake of public safety and fairness to the tax-paying families of any victims. I sure as hell wouldn't want my tax money to feed someone who wronged me.

The only thing that bothers me here, is that guilt does not seem to be 100% certain.

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The reasoning was nearly identical to the legal argument the court embraced in forbidding the execution of juvenile offenders.
Death to juvenile murderers, too. Death to any violent criminals who don't act out of reasonable despair. Screw age; I knew right from wrong by age 10.

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Old 08-08-2012, 05:22 AM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

I think no matter how smart you are, you kill someone because of anything other than an accident..you should receive the same treatment.

I still can't understand why they will keep someone in prison for 70 years until they die when they know they killed someone. Save $40k a year and get it done with already..

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Old 08-08-2012, 06:14 AM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

Harsh but true and reasonable. And why all the semi-ceremonial executions, anyway? Why not just walk into the cell and put a bullet in them?

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Old 08-08-2012, 02:57 PM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

What was the alternative to the death sentence? Keep him in jail the rest of his days???

If he has the intelligence to be able to go out and kill someone then he needs to be treated as a dangerous person, either sectioned as a nutter and locked away, if they say he is beyond help, or killed. The latter was the cheapest method I believe.

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Old 08-08-2012, 06:13 PM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

Agree with all the posters (except the original post) that there is nothing wrong with putting this man to sleep. And that's basically what they did. He shouldn't be allowed to get away with it or spend the rest of his life in prison at tax payers expense just because he has a low IQ.
It's not a popular topic, but I DO believe in the death penalty. Always have and always will for the right crimes. And yes someone 'innocent' might get killed, but that's happening every day to people who are murdered. What about THOSE innocent people?

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Old 08-08-2012, 08:36 PM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

That one point does bother me. They had no evidence. Texas doesn't hesitate! They even kill innocent men there, i.e.; Todd Willingham.

I can't agree on the minors either, unless he had previous offenses.

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Old 08-08-2012, 08:49 PM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

Im no pacifist but I believe living the rest of your life in prison is worse than death.. Imagine being raped everyday because you got a sweet ass and mantits.. go through that for however long you live your life then die and go whereever you choose to believe people go after they die. That sounds like a lovely plan. Some of you are quick to back the death penalty but talk shit about the middle east and their savage laws.

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Old 08-08-2012, 09:24 PM
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Re: Marvin Wilson Execution: Texas Puts Man With 61 IQ To Death

Richard Speck had a great time in jail!

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