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February 18, 2006

Back to the lethal injection scrum in Morales

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger denial of clemency to California death row inmate Michael Morales(details here) closes one chapter in this high-profile case.  But that just mean the action now shifts back to the debates over lethal injection protocols. 

As this Los Angeles Times article highlights, medical groups are now in the mix after a federal judge ordered that a doctor monitor the execution (details here).  As the article explains: "An array of professional medical organizations lashed out against the court prescription, saying that it contradicts a physician's obligation to save lives."  Additional media coverage of this new twist can be found here and here.

Related prior posts:

UPDATE:  How Appealing has a collection of Morales media coverage here.

February 18, 2006 at 03:26 AM | Permalink

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I am a loved one of someone incarcerated in the Feds with a sentence of 12 1/2 years. He was given the opportunity to obtain a 5K.1 sentence reduction after he was sentenced. A family member of his helped him by making several drug buys from one person which led to a 7 year sentence for him and had to testify in another case stemming from one of the undercover buys, but was found not guilty because the other guy would not cooperate. The prosecutor has filed a motion for a 2 level sentence reduction. We feel he should get at least 3 because that is what they give you for acceptance of responsibility which is nothing compared to work done as an informant. We retained a lawyer to handle the Rule 35. The attorney now claims that it cannot be negotiated and that it's up to the government as to what they feel it's worth. He seems to blow us off when we contact him as if we are bothering him because we are asking questions. We were told several attorneys in the beginning that any cooperation after sentencing leads to a much larger reduction as opposed to cooperation done before sentencing. What is the average reduction in a 5K.1 on a small scale? Are we expecting too much? We don't feel that his lawyer really even tried to negotiate with the prosecutor because he has been paid and doesn't care now. We have no way to know if he has tried or not, but from his attitude in our hearts we believe he has done nothing except look at the motion that was filed and made no attempt to fight for more. His attitude is very non-chalant now compared to when he was trying to get our money, he was all positive feedback. Due to his attitude and lack of interest we feel that he more than likely recieved the motion recommending 2 levels and just accepted it because he has more important cases. The motion has been filed already by the prosecutor and we are waiting for a court date, so is it too late in the game to switch lawyers to attempt a renegotiation if possible? Or is there a way for us to find out if he really attempted to plead our case for a larger reduction...for maybe even just one more level? We are very disappointed and frustrated and feel as if he has the money and now could care less. Do we have to just accept what they have recommended for just 2 levels when his family member put his life on the line so to speak for his behalf? What can we do if anything?

Posted by: Layla | Feb 18, 2006 5:56:30 AM

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