Wednesday, February 05, 2014

HANK SKINNER GUILTY, AS ALWAYS

HANK SKINNER GUILTY, AS ALWAYS
Dudley Sharp

13 years or so, ago, when Skinner first proclaimed "Test the additional DNA, it will prove my innocence", any thinking person knew he was guilty of slaughtering 3 innocents.

This is one of those very common guilty murderer cases, whereby a bunch of anti death penalty folks and their patsies in the media, join the worldwide drumbeat chorus: 

"Texas is going to murder another innocent person".

Of course, these frauds have become so common that they seem an everyday occurrence (1).

Now, with the 2012 DNA results  and June, 2014 hearing, the long known truth is not revealed, just re-asserted:

Skinner is an always confirmed triple murderer.

My 2011 op/ed, with the 2012 & 2014 DNA results inserted:

Skinner previously rejected DNA testing
Dudley Sharp, Special Contributor
Austin American Statesman, published Nov. 3, 2011

Make no mistake: It was Hank Skinner's decision not to test additional DNA, pre-trial.

Had Skinner known that additional pre-trial DNA testing would have cleared him, he would have ordered it.

Look at what the cabal of "test the DNAers" want us to believe:

That Skinner refused additional pre-trial DNA testing, thereby taking the risk of receiving the death penalty, intentionally, and making that choice over taking the risk that he would be freed, instead.

Does anyone believe that nonsense?

The allegation that Skinner bowed to his original defense counsel's demands not to test additional DNA, pre-trial, is absurd.

There is the minor problem of Skinner responding to his counsel, "OK, good call, I'll risk death over freedom."

All Skinner had to do was order his attorneys to test the additional DNA, which they would have to do or go to the judge and say, "My idiot attorney will not allow additional DNA testing that will clear me." At which point the court would insist on defense counsel following their clients' orders; or appoint new counsel who would.

That is precisely what would have happened if Skinner had known additional DNA testing would have helped him.

As Skinner knew the opposite was the case, he declined additional testing. It is the only possible reason Skinner denied additional pre-trial DNA testing.


That is a "duh" moment.

Now comes Skinner, et al, meaning defense counsel, a bunch of "well meaning" anti-death penalty folks, and a smattering of the blindly ignorant crying, "Test the DNA. What have you got to lose, except revealing you are about to execute another innocent?"

Enter reality.

We already have DNA that implicates Skinner, as well as much additional evidence that sent Skinner to death row for the murder of Twila Busby, his live-in girlfriend, and her two mentally impaired sons, Elwin Caler and Randy Busby.

Skinner's "own" experts said the DNA evidence against him was solid and that the blood splatter evidence contradicted Skinner's description of events.

First and foremost, Skinner wishes to live longer, just as Busby and her two sons did. That is the main reason for the appeals. What Texas is attempting to prevent now in testing the DNA that Skinner refused to test pre-trial is a very bad precedent, to wit:

In a successful effort to delay his execution, Skinner files motions to test the DNA material he had previously rejected for pre-trial testing.

If Skinner succeeds, future defendants will be able to demand do-overs because their trial strategy failed. It is a horrible precedent, which the state must fight, and for which all criminals and defense counsel are drooling over, both for very good and obvious reasons.

(NOTE  2/3/14  this is the reason the state agreed to the DNA testing instead of having a court order it)

Some in the media, inexcusably, are not presenting those facts to their readers.

It is the important and only reason the state is fighting this fight: to stop criminals, their attorneys and their supporters from gaming the system, even more.

The state will prevail, as it should.  And a triple murderer's life will be justly taken.

======

Added  2/4/14

 "  'Forensic tests on the knife blade proved the presence of blood on the weapon, and the material found on the knife contained DNA traces from Skinner, Caler and Busby.'  "

“  'We do not say it was that person’s DNA,” Hester said of how DPS interprets DNA results recovered from a crime scene. “They are not consistent solely with him, but they are consistent with him being a possible contributor.'  ”

"Hester also testified that some DNA recovered from the crime scene was contaminated with (Skinner's)  DNA . . . The longtime forensic scientist also testified that some genetic material recovered from a carpet stain, door handles in the home and a door frame could be tied to Skinner." ("Testimony ends in Hank Skinner's DNA hearing",  Jim McBride, Amarillo Globe-News, February 4, 2014 - 3:05pm)

added June 7, 2014:  

"The DNA tests that produced results allowed the state to identify Skinner's DNA at 19 new locations at the crime scene, including on a knife blade used in the crime and in blood smears on the walls. But, state lawyers emphasized, the DNA testing revealed no evidence that Busby's uncle was at the crime scene." ("AG, Lawyers for Hank Skinner Argue Over DNA in Death Penalty Case", Texas Tribune, 6/6/2014)

This is ending, exactly, as Skinner knew it would. A guilty triple murderer executed.

added July 17, 2014:

No surprise. The judge ruled against Skinner.


"Tuesday’s brief ruling . . .  validated prosecutors, who had emphasized that the testing identified Skinner’s DNA at 19 additional spots in the crime scene — among them a knife used in the murders — and did not provide new confirmation that Busby’s uncle had been there."   Ruling Goes Against Death Row Inmate Skinner, Eli Okun, Texas Tribune, July 16, 2014.

A bunch of time and money wasted on a vile triple murderer, who everyone knew was guilty, the very second he said that additonal DNA testing would prove him innocent.

All of Skinner's remaining appeals will be denied. 

======

Sharp, a Houston resident, is an author who has written extensively about the death penalty

1) The Innocent Frauds: Standard Anti Death Penalty Strategy