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September 10, 2010

Washington becomes second state to find success with one-drug lethal injection protocol

As detailed in this AP article, the state of Washington carried out an execution early this morning.  As the article details, this was the state's first execution in nearly a decade and it was completed using the same one-drug lethal injection protocol that has been used in Ohio over the last year.  In addition, the executed defendant had some notable final comments:

Convicted killer Cal Coburn Brown was executed early Friday by lethal injection for the rape, torture and murder of a Seattle-area woman, after delivering a statement complaining he was treated unfairly by the legal system.

Brown, 52, died at 12:56 a.m. PDT, after a four-member team injected a lethal one-drug cocktail in the execution chamber of the Washington State Penitentiary. The father, brother and two sisters of his victim, Holly Washa, 21, witnessed the execution, as did King County prosecutor Dan Satterberg.

Brown protested sentencing disparities, saying that criminals who had killed many more people, such as Green River killer Gary Ridgway, were serving life sentences while he received a death sentence. "I only killed one victim," he said. "I cannot really see that there is true justice. Hopefully, sometime in the future that gets straightened out."

Brown did not apologize to the family of the victim, but said he understood their emnity for him. He said he forgave that hatred, held no emnity toward them and hoped the execution would give them closure. He also said the prison staff had been most professional and that he had no complaints about his treatment there in 17 years.

After his comments, Brown, who was lying on his back strapped to a gurney, looked up at the tubes sticking out of the wall and connected to his body. When the drug was administered, his chest heaved three times and his lips shuddered, then there was no movement....It was Washington's first execution since 2001, and Brown had been on death row for 16 years.

September 10, 2010 at 07:01 AM | Permalink


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bello schifo !!!!!!

Posted by: claudio giusti, italia | Sep 10, 2010 2:06:48 PM

"I only killed one victim," he said.

Wow, 16 1/2 years on death row and no insight into his crime.

Posted by: Robert | Sep 10, 2010 6:04:50 PM

Apparently he thought the three other women he attacked weren't worth mentioning.

Posted by: MikeinCT | Sep 10, 2010 6:20:21 PM

The Governor's statement on clemency had one misleading portion. Our friends on the 9th Circus overturned Brown's death sentence, fortunately reinstated by the Supreme Court. Had they not reversed, he probably never would have been executed. Also, the Parole Board in 2009 split 2-2 on a motion to grant clemency. The two members who wanted Brown to live voiced concerns about the death penalty and its application similar to what Brown was whining about on his final statement.

Posted by: DaveP | Sep 10, 2010 7:52:55 PM

DaveP, I believe that the author of the Ninth Circuit's decision in Brown was Kozinski. I think Kozinski got it very wrong in Brown (the excused juror was a real piece of work), but Kozinski is a principled judge. Uttecht v. Brown was 5-4 at the Supreme Court. It shouldn't have been, but it was. I don't think Brown's case is an example of the silliness that we often see at the Ninth Circuit.

Posted by: federalist | Sep 10, 2010 8:52:28 PM

Yes! Another murder by the government!!! So excellent! We are so great and vengeful! WE ALWAYS GET JUSTICE in murdering he who murders and we should be so proud! How enlightened we have become in refusing to progress past a medieval mentality. Again, such a very proud day!!!!

Posted by: neanderthal | Sep 10, 2010 9:34:44 PM

This predator had the protection of the lawyer for decades. Had this execution taken place at age 18, or earlier, we would be an innocent victim ahead, and spared who knows how many others the trauma of this predator's sick needs. He forgives the family any animosity, perhaps. The betrayal of the lawyer of the crime victim is unforgivable. It is time to get rid of these biased, pro-criminal internal traitors from the criminal law policy.

Neanderthal, as usual for the left wing criminal lover, not a word about the victims of this predator, including some in prison, of which there were likely dozens if not hundreds. You are with the lawyers, and the vile government rent seekers, generating their jobs from the crimes of this predators and keeping him alive as long as possible. I would like to see a movement where the families of murder victims bring street justice to their horrible irresponsible enemies and criminal collaborators, including, judges, lawyers, professors, lying human rights whores. The murder number may not be 17,000 but higher. About 100,000 missing persons reports are not resolved yearly. The number of victims of the lawyer client may well be 70,000 not 17,000.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 10, 2010 10:05:48 PM

I agree with the murderer. The system is ridiculously contradictory and unfair.

The Green River killer did in 48 victims and likely many more than that. He should have been executed at age 16, with a tremendous return on investment. Instead, the pro-criminal lawyer protected this predator, and cost the lives of dozens of people, dropped real estate values who knows how many $millions if not $billions, and made people think of their personal safety instead of economic productivity for decades. It is the lawyer that must be rounded up, executed, and then we can have at the lawyer client, prevent this massive damage done by each and every one of them.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 10, 2010 10:14:21 PM

yes, Kozinski wrote for the panel with Berzon and Reinhardt joining. What a disgrace: Alex agreeing with the ultra liberal on a death case. The only good thing Alex said was "Cal Brown is not a nice man." Actually, the dissent from the denial of rehearing enbanc was real good. Fortunately, Kennedy came on the right side for this one. Maybe he likes to reverse Reinhardt. I know that I would.

Posted by: DaveP | Sep 10, 2010 10:27:47 PM

DaveP, I agree it wasn't one of Kozinski's finest efforts, but it's difficult to call it a disgrace that he came out on the side of Berzon and Reinhardt in this case. As far as I can tell, Kozinski is a principled guy. He got it wrong in Brown, but it was a 5-4 decision at SCOTUS. Part of the issue was Washington's quirky rule that the defendant didn't have to object. Moreover, Supreme Court caselaw on jury exclusions in death cases isn't exactly clear. Those two factors, plus Kozinski's lack of tolerance of the work-a-day muddling through that happens most of the time in life, I think led him astray.

The real disgrace of the Ninth Circuit isn't Kozinski--it's the serial and studied refusal to comply with AEDPA. I'm willing to give Kozinski a pass here--while noting it wasn't one of his better efforts.

Posted by: federalist | Sep 10, 2010 10:54:03 PM

agreed. I like Alex. I enjoy most of his opinions. Obviously,there are alot of people who don't care for him for several reasons. Most of the reversals at the 9th have been 5-4 over the years except maybe the last couple of terms with several unanimous summary reversals. Supreme Court caselaw isn't clear on a lot of issues, not just jury selection.

Posted by: DaveP | Sep 10, 2010 11:03:17 PM

Then isn't imprisonment just government sanctioned kidnapping? Should we do away with taxation because it's government sanctioned extortion?

Posted by: MikeinCT | Sep 10, 2010 11:20:34 PM

MikeinCT --

You might add that fines are government sanctioned theft.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Sep 11, 2010 9:04:00 AM

Oh what a proud day! Taxation is done through representation and with consent. Of course they're not comparable. Imprisonment is the forced taking of liberty and fines are the forced taking of monetary goods, both for the punishment of crimes. Absolutely both a valid and just way to punish! Of course we should not end those.

But oh how proud we should all be at government murder! And oh what a proud day when we talk about murder and one next compares it to monetary sanctions (e.g. fines, taxes). Oh, the value of dollars! Revenge lives, REVENGE LIVES!

Posted by: neanderthal | Sep 11, 2010 10:51:54 AM

But how are they different? The death penalty, taxation and imprisonment are all sanctioned by our votes and those of our legislators. That doesn't make the 'victims' of it any happier. The government can take your life, liberty and property when you break the law. But why are they valid while execution is a crime to you?

Posted by: MikeinCT | Sep 11, 2010 12:04:22 PM

MikeinCT asks: "The government can take your life, liberty and property when you break the law. But why are they valid while execution is a crime to you?"

Answer: "Because neanderthal says so."

Such is the logic of the simplistic neanderthal. In his choice of screen names, it appears neathderthal is describing him or herself rather than those who accept the death penalty, properly applied, as the antithesis of murder.

Posted by: David | Sep 11, 2010 1:48:25 PM

Never said it was a crime! It's a murderous form of punishment to be oh so proud of! We are so just and vengeful! Revenge live...REVENGE LIVES!

Posted by: neanderthal | Sep 12, 2010 11:17:19 AM

neanderthal --

You must be the fellow for whom the phrase "Johnny One-Note" was invented.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Sep 12, 2010 12:50:05 PM

You say it's not a crime but that it is like murder? Contradiction?

Posted by: MikeinCT | Sep 12, 2010 2:21:16 PM

I don't care how we characterize it...we just need to make sure people are killed!

Posted by: neanderthal | Sep 13, 2010 11:37:41 AM

We need a new sign:

Sentencing Blog and Troll Soup Kitchen - Continuous Operation Since 2004

I'm not sure that I've ever seen one of the poor creatures go hungry here...

Posted by: Anon | Sep 13, 2010 11:49:35 AM

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