Random Access Memories

January 6, 2009

Charles Singleton

by @ 6:26 am. Filed under Crime & Justice, Politics

Let’s take a moment to remember Charles Singleton.

He was convicted of murder by Arkansas in 1979 for stabbing store clerk Mary Lou York twice in the neck. He was executed by the state on January 6th, 2004.

While that was a terrible crime and he should have definitely been punished for it the part of this I want people to remember is how the state managed to kill him.

In 1986 the Supreme Court proclaimed it illegal to execute people unless they understood that they were being put to death and why.

An appeals court based in St Louis ruled in February 2003 that the constitution’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment would not be violated if the authorities forcibly gave antipsychotic medication to the inmate, Charles Laverne Singleton. It was this decision that was upheld by the Supreme Court later that year.

So in short if you’re crazy we can still execute you by making you take medication so that we think you’re sane enough to execute, regardless of your mental state when you commited your crime.

If you don’t think this is a gross violation of people’s civil rights then you should not be reading this website.

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