Friday, June 20, 2008

South Carolina: Clemency? No Thanks.

James Earl Reed will be electrocuted tonight in South Carolina. The execution is the result of the 1994 shootings of his ex-girlfriend's parents. The Charleston Post and Courier notes that Reed's "low intelligence and difficult personality were hallmarks of his trial, where he represented himself." Attorneys said his IQ was about 77, a mere 7 points from "mild retardation." After a jury took a mere 30 minutes to find him guilty, Reed asked for a lawyer to represent him during sentencing. But the judge denied the request and the result was capital punishment. Reed, who is described as "difficult to get along with," has never requested clemency from the governor's office. In a letter to The Associated Press that was written years ago, he wrote that he would never ask the governor for clemency, eat a "final meal" or make a "last statement." And that appears to have been his last statement. See story here.

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