A white supremacist on death row has found support for keeping him alive from an unlikely source: the relatives of his victims.
Family members of the family of three, including an 8-year-old girl, whom Daniel Lee Lee was convicted of murdering in 1999 in Arkansas, have come forward to voice their opposition to his execution.
Lee is awaiting death by lethal injection for the murder of Bill Mueller, his wife Nancy, and her daughter Sarah Powell, 8.
Daniel Lewis Lee, an avowed white supremacist, was scheduled to be put to death on Monday for the 1996 murder of a family of three, including an eight-year-old girl
Lee is awaiting death by lethal injection for the murder of Bill Mueller (left), his wife Nancy, and her daughter Sarah Powell, 8
Among the family members who have come to his support is 80-year-old Earlene Peterson, Nancy’s mom and Sarah’s grandmother, who isn’t shy about saying she voted for President Donald Trump.
She tells CNN that an execution would ‘shame’ her daughter ‘that someone would have to die for her,’ even though the slain mom and her family were tortured, killed and dumped in a lake.
Peterson adds a direct message to Trump: ‘For one time in your life, lean to your better self and know that this is wrong’.
She adds, ‘I don’t want this done’.
Lee was to be put to death on Monday, but the US Supreme Court blocked a request from the Trump administration to reinstate capital punishment.
Among the family members who have come to Lee’s support is 80-year-old Earlene Peterson, Nancy’s mom and Sarah’s grandmother, who isn’t shy about saying she voted for President Donald Trump and wants the convicted killer’s execution overturned
There have been just three federal executions since the death penalty was reinstated by the government in 1988, the last one 16 years ago.
Attorney General Bill Barr announced in July that the Federal Bureau of Prisons would adopt a new lethal injection protocol, paving the way for the executions of Lee and four other convicted murderers held at the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana.
Five convicted murderers were scheduled to die starting this Monday with Lee, by a lethal dose of the drug pentobarbital.
To follow were the executions of Wesley Ira Purkey, Alfred Bourgeois, and Dustin Lee Honken, until the high court intervened.
In addition to Lee, four other convicts are awaiting execution. Pictured are three of the convicts (left to right): Wesley Ira Purkey, Alfred Bourgeois, and Dustin Lee Honken
All five convicted murderers are being held at the federal penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana
A fifth planned execution – that of a Native American man from the Navajo tribe – was suspended by another court.
Members of the high court declined to allow federal executions to go forward for the moment, saying that – ‘in light of what is at stake’ – the block on executions should be reviewed by an appeals court.
It added that while the application was denied for now, another could be filed if the matter had not been resolved by lower courts within 60 days.
Lee was aided by an accomplice, Chevie Kehoe, the man seen by many as the actual mastermind of the crime.
Lee was to be put to death on Monday, but the US Supreme Court blocked a request from the Trump administration to reinstate capital punishment
Prosecutors say Lee was aided by an accomplice, Chevie Kehoe (right), the man seen by many as the actual mastermind of the crime.
Both were accused and convicted of a plot to steal guns and money, which they planned to pass on to a white ethno-state in the Pacific Northwest.
Their scheme involved targeting Mueller, a known gunsmith with cash and weapons in his house. He and his family were later found dead in an Arkansas lake.
The family members were tortured with a stun gun, tied up and suffocated by bags that were placed over their heads. Their bodies had been weighed down to stay underneath the water.
But Kehoe was given a life sentence, which didn’t make sense to some, even the family members of the victims.
‘There’s no question in my mind that Daniel Lee is guilty. The part that’s questioning is that the other man was more guilty and he got life without parole, so why did Daniel Lee get the death penalty? It didn’t make sense’, Kimma Gurel, Peterson’s remaining daughter told CNN.
Lawyers for Lee since his conviction argued that prosecutors relied on discredited science to prove he would be a psychopath in prison, CNN reports.
The attorneys also claim prosecutors misled the jury about a prior murder falsely attributed to Lee when they sought to prove he’d be a danger in prison and should be put to death.
Federal judges in Arkansas who reviewed the arguments doubted a jury would have returned a death sentence for Lee if the faulty evidence had not been included, but were powerless to do anything.
An appeals court last week rejected an effort by Lee’s legal team to have the death sentence reversed.
Peterson, also has her religious convictions for opposing his execution. She previously released an emotional video online that makes a similar plea for his life.
‘I can’t see how executing Daniel Lee will honor my daughter in any way’, Peterson said in the footage. ‘In fact, kind of like it dirties her name because she wouldn’t want it and I don’t want it’.
She isn’t alone in opposing the death sentence.
According to opinion polls, support for the death penalty has declined in recent years and is down to around 54 percent from 80 percent in the early 1990s.
Only a handful of states, mainly in the US south, still carry out executions. Of the 25 executions in the US in 2018, 13 were in Texas.
‘Yes, Daniel Lee damaged my life, but I can’t believe taking his life is going to change any of that’, Peterson says in her video message. ‘I can’t see how executing Daniel Lee will honor my daughter in any way.
‘In fact’ she adds, ‘it kind of likes endirties (sic) her name, because she wouldn’t want it, and I wouldn’t want it.
‘The government ain’t doing this for me, because I would say no’.
Pictures of Peterson’s daughter Nancy (right), and her granddaughter Sarah Powell, 8 (left)
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Family of woman and daughter murdered by white supremacist say they DO NOT want the federal inmate executed after SCOTUS delay, including a Trump-supporting grandma who tells the president 'I don't want this' have 1216 words, post on www.dailymail.co.uk at December 12, 2019. This is cached page on Talk Vietnam. If you want remove this page, please contact us.