Mar 13, 2011

The Last Word

It's been a very busy few weeks with little or no down time to blog or read blogs. I decided to reward my self with some light, frothy media entertainment last night.

Yeah, right. That's not happening here. I watched the 2008 documentary The Last Word instead.

The Last Word is the true story of a mentally challenged young man, Johnny Garrett, who was falsely accused, prosecuted and put to death for the rape and murder of a local elderly nun. The fact that Mr. Garrett was no where near the crime scene mattered not to the political lynch mob who wanted a scapegoat for this crime and could care less if the goat was innocent or guilty. The synopsis below from The Last Word film sight sums it up succinctly.

"During interviews with key players the case of Johnny Frank Garrett unfolds like a recipe for executing the innocent. A death penalty obsessed District Attorney and his lap-dog medical examiner, ladder climbing cops, bloodthirsty media, enraged and fearful jurors, incompetent defense lawyers, politicized judges, witch hunting religious zealots and an iron fisted Governor with national ambitions meld together as perfect ingredients for a plate of government sponsored murder."

The documentary points out that 98% of death row inmates admit their guilt when asked if they have any "last words" they wish to share prior to their execution. 2% maintain their innocence as did Johnny Garrett.

" In Garrett's final statement he professed his innocence one last time but did so in a voice driven by hate and vengeance. In his chilling conclusion Garrett promised those responsible for his murder that someday
he would have the last word and they would pay for what they had done."

And pay they did...

-One juror fell down a flight of stairs and died several days later. Another juror lost his daughter to an accidental gunshot wound to the head. The same jurors sister was killed by a drunk driver.

-Four people involved in the prosecution of Johnny Garrett, including 2 police officers and 2 attorneys died of leukemia. One attorney had healthy bone marrow set aside but ironically the marrow inexplicably disappeared from the hospital. Much like semen and blood samples did from the scene of the crime.

-The reporter who followed the condemned man’s grief stricken mother into the public restroom and filmed her over the stall while she was on the toilet was killed in a plane crash.

-The lap dog medical examiner was later convicted of numerous felonies for falsifying autopsy reports and was sent to prison. His wife along with Johnny Garrett's token trial lawyer both died of pancreatic cancer.

-The psychic’s husband (the police consulted the physic who gave them Johnny Garrett’s address labeling him the killer) was found dead in his truck. No cause of death has been determined.

-The jailhouse snitch who testified against Johnny so he could get a reduced sentence himself, the school teacher who testified against Johnny and the district attorney all committed suicide.

-The District Attorneys daughter hung herself a few years later as well.

Talk about your face slap example of reaping what you've sown. Predicted by Johnny Garrett himself.

The hairs found on the victim at the scene of the crime which were of Hispanic or African American origin were later matched by the FBI to a Cuban refuge who came to the US when Castro opened the port of Mariel to his "freedom flotilla." Some of you may remember that it was discovered that in addition to those Cubans seeking political asylum, Castro had also emptied out the mental institutions, prisons and rounded up the homosexuals to rid his country of its "undesirables."

The owner of the hairs at the crime scene had been in prison in Cuba for rape and murder.

He later confessed to the elderly nun's murder. The murder Johnny Garrett was put to death for.

As long as there are people who are more interested in saving their own $80.000 or $800,000 a year jobs rather than telling the long as there are people who are more interested in political gain than justice... as long as there are people who are more concerned about liability than doing the right thing even at the dreadful cost of victimizing and condemning the innocent and their families....

Yeah. I could go on and on. But I won't. In a perfect world the death penalty may have it's benefits. But no need to furrow our brows over that debate because currently there are no benefits. Why?

We are not living in a perfect world.


Lilith said...

I don't understand the death penalty thing. If it's wrong to take the life of another, how can if be okay for the state to take a life?

Elizabeth said...

That is some wild shit --

The death penalty -- a lovely institution that our country shares with the most repressive regimes on earth. Shameful.

Kathleen Scott said...

Your recounting reads like a sci-fi horror novel plot.

I believe in karma. Sometimes it doesn't happen fast enough to suit me but I believe that ill begets ill, at least in the long run.

And the same is true of good. Good acts bring peace and joy.

Hoping more peace and joy come your way.

Zoey's mom said...

I can't wait to share this with my friend,Zoey's Godmother,who, seriously,if she isn't going to Heaven,non of us are...she has for the last 10 years,consistently and unselfishly, visited those on death row here in California.She actually is going to a luncheon on Thursday,and the speaker is Sister Helen Prjean,author of Dead Man Walking.I have seen her speak a few time myself.Amazing book.Amazing movie.Simply an amazing woman.

"Government ... can’t be trusted to control its own bureaucrats or collect taxes equitably or fill a pothole, much less decide which of its citizens to kill."~Sister HELEN PREJEAN

Thanks for the reminder on the one armed drive.We talked about it but I am certain we didn't add it to the final deal.I think the thought is that we are a ways away from her doing it herself,heck she doesn't even have a pincer grasp,but might as well do it now,or maybe it can be added later?I'll call tomorrow.

And,so sorry about your Nancy.Read it on Zoey's birthday and got caught up in the day and forgot to stop back and send my prayers your way.Keep telling Nancy about adventures like the men's bathroom.something tells me she is still listening.


Kathleen: In the unseen world sowing and reaping are equally as evident as in the world of gardening. And i agree as humans we would like to see people reap sooner than later.

Zoey's mom: Zoey's Godmother sounds like a fighter. DNA has proven that there are too many people on death row and in prison who had nothing to do with the crimes they have been convicted for.

Elizabeth said...

I'm just checking in, wondering how things are. I miss you and hope that everything is all right.