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MY FIRST VISIT TO DEATH ROW-Guest Blog by MamaVia

Hi, everyone!  I thought that since Kelly is still a little under the weather (no pun intended), I would pull together some information about “LIFE ON DEATH ROW”.
Each prison has its very own “personality”, what may be allowed in one prison, may be “contraband” in another!     My “friends” on Death row are: Toney D, Union Correctional, FL,, Wayne P., Chillicothe Correctional, Ohio and Travis R., Polunsky, Texas.  Travis is allowed a typewriter, Wayne is allowed to have a small job, and Toney is allowed letters which include stamps.  None of the three are living a “lush life”, but they all do the best they can, under the circumstances.
Both Toney and Travis are allowed to receive monies into their commissary account through “JPay”, Wayne is allowed to receive money only from the people on his “Visitor List”.  I am listed on Toney’s visitor list, I am allowed to visit anySaturday from 9 to 3. I’m planning to visit next month, close to his birthday, assuming my corneal surgery allows me to drive the 4 hour round trip.  Toney looks forward to my visits, but I dread them!
After corresponding with Toney for some time, I asked him in one of my letters if he would like me to visit.  I had NO idea of what I was getting myself into!  Of course, he was elated at the idea that someone would come and visit; after all, he is only allowed out of his cell 3 times a week for a shower, and 3 times a week for recreation!  He is fully shackled and chained from his door to the shower and back, to the “rec cage” and back…so, to him, spending time OUT of his cell, in a “regular” room, without shackles and belly chains is a valuable experience!
The first step was to add me to his “visitor list”.  Different prisons have different rules, some allow an unlimited number of names on the visitor list, Union Correctional allows 5.  This wasn’t an issue for Toney, because his parents have passed, and he has no siblings, but there are men who must be very selective about who they have on the list, because, to quote Toney, “you can’t waste one of the openings on someone who never comes!”
To get on the visitor list takes some intestinal fortitude!  Toney sent me a 2 page application which must be answered truthfully, “under penalty of law”, and the application allows them to run a full background check. After completing the application, the applicant sends it to a special processing unit.
What can disqualify a visitor?
To list a few, a criminal history, providing false or inaccurate information on a visiting application, mailing an incomplete application, etc. Possessing a criminal record will not automatically disqualify you for visitation. The nature, extent, and recency of criminal offenses are taken into consideration. However, as of January 8, 2007, offenders must be discharged from community supervision for at least one year prior to being eligible for consideration.
Additionally: A visitor will not be permitted to be on more than one inmate’s approved visiting record unless they are immediate family members. If you are already on the approved list of a non-family member, you may be added to the list of a family member. However, you may not be added to the list of a non-family member if you are already on an approved visiting list, family or otherwise.
The State of Florida states that it takes up to 30 days to process applications, and mine took EXACTLY 30 days!  After my application was approved, they notified Toney that I had been approved to visit on SATURDAYS.  The State reminds you in many ways that Visitation is a privilege and as such is subject to suspension/revocation if circumstances dictate!
There are plenty of rules involved, for the inmate and the visitor, and the smallest infraction can mean that the visit will NOT happen!
For the Inmate:

1) During visiting, inmates shall dress in accordance with Rule 33-602.101, F.A.C. Permanent inmates assigned to reception centers may wear a white shirt and white trousers during visitation. Inmates at work release centers whose work assignments are at the center may wear white shirts and white trousers during visitation.

(2) Inmates shall be strip-searched before and after visiting. Staff will conduct searches in accordance with Rule 33-602.204, F.A.C.

(3) Inmates shall not visit with anyone other than their authorized visitors.

(4) The inmate shall not pass items to another inmate or to a visitor or accept items from another inmate or a visitor except as specified in Rule 33-601.727, F.A.C.

(5) Inmates shall not be loud, boisterous, threatening, or disorderly during a visit or while in the visiting area.

(6) Inmates may briefly embrace and kiss each visitor once at the beginning and end of each visit.

(a) Inmates may hold their small children or the children of their visitors.

(b) Inmates and their visitors may hold hands if the holding of hands can be observed by visiting park staff. However, the holding of hands in either the visitor’s or inmate’s lap is prohibited.

(c) No other forms of affection or physical contact between inmates and visitors are authorized.

For the Visitor:
It’s always a good idea to dress conservatively. The following is a list of some of the clothing deemed inappropriate: Tank tops, skin tight or spandex clothing, shorts that are more than 3 inches above the knee, skirts, fish net style clothing, clothing with offensive language/pictures, military style camouflage clothing to include jungle (green), urban (grey or black), and desert (tan or brown), and see thru clothing.
On my very first visit, I had to leave Union Correctional and drive to the closest Dollar Store for “proper” underclothes!  I wasn’t very sure that the Dollar Store would be of much assistance…after all, I wear a 40DD bra, which is difficult enough to find at Nordstroms!  But, I guess I wasn’t the ONLY person sent over to the Dollar Store, they carried sizes 32AA to “I could use one cup as a hat”!  AND they had a full line of underpants for both men and women, so it appears that I wasn’t the only one to “flunk out” during my entry shakedown!
 
They have RULES for EVERYTHING!  You can bring up to $50.00, in $1.00, $5.00, $10.00 and $20.00 denominations only or silver change, per visitor, regardless of age, to purchase snacks and beverages from the canteen or vending machines. All snacks and beverages must be purchased and consumed in the visiting area. A small wallet or pouch may be used for containing the bills and any change received from the canteen or vending purchases. YOU must handle the money, the INMATE CAN NOT!
You may bring the vehicle key necessary to operate your auto, BUT  keyless entry devices are not permitted unless the duty warden or designee determines that the device is the only means for the visitor to access the vehicle AND it does not pose a threat to institutional security.  IN OTHER WORDS, if it is a Swiss Knife sans car key, forget it!  They aren’t as strict on this as they once were, because most new cars have only keyless entry…  Horror story #2 involved the day I showed up there with TWO car key fobs…I couldn’t lock one inside the car, the car doesn’t allow you to lock of the fob is INside the car…I had to explain it to guard #1 that I accidentally had BOTH fobs, and explain it AGAIN to guard #s 2, 3 and 4…and then tell the story backward (just kidding).  It COULD have been hilarious…if it hadn’t been so frightening! I ended up with 4 guards watching me explain the same story to the Assistant Warden..l think they were taking mental notes to see if telling the same story 5 times made sense!  They FINALLY let me in! (THAT was Visit #2)
After you park your car, you walk over to the first guard shack.  You must show them the Prison Visitor Card your inmate sends.  Then, walk across a huge paved area between two VERY tall guard towers-which remind me of the towers you see on airport runways…you can’t see anyone inside, the windows have a reflective coating…but you are just SURE that rifles are trained on your heart or brains!  As you approach the building, there are two VERY tall fences, with WARNING signs proclaiming that the fence is electrified.  I certainly wasn’t going to test it to find out if they meant it!
I wasn’t sure if I should ring a bell, or….?  So, I just stood and tried to figure out what to do…obviously, they WERE watching me, because I heard a buzzing notice and the huge gate began to open. I walked into a “no-mans land”…a strip of land between the fence/gate I just walked thru, and another just like it ahead of me.  I’m guessing those two fences were 20-25 feet apart.  The gate closed behind me…it took about 2 minutes to close, and 30 seconds or so later, the next gate buzzed and began to open.
After getting thru the two gates, I followed the path out to the building.  A huge glass window (like a bank, perhaps) had a sign which instructed me to put my drivers license up on the magnified portion of the glass….which I did…and 2-3 minutes later, the next fence gate opened.
After going thru the gate, I followed the arrows to an open door and stepped in.  Three men Correctional Officers and 2 women were waiting…they all wore rubber gloves, which caused me to wonder what I was in for!  I stepped up to the desk, and the CO there took an inventory of everything I was holding, (pouch with money, car key) then an inventory of glasses, jewelry, etc.
A sharp “FOLLOW ME” moved me to a small room…where I flunked out…on my first visit, I did not KNOW that both a “proper” bra and “proper” panties were mandatory…so, I had to reverse the above procedure, go to the dollar store, buy a bra and panties (no, dollar store didn’t have a ladies room and I couldn’t find a gas station on the way back!) (So, I parked between a big truck and a van and put on my new underthings!). (I barely got done in the nick of time…just as I finished, the CO with the drug sniffing dog was making rounds in the parking lot!
So…rerun all that I did before, zoom, zoom, zoom, and back to the CO (with no sense of humor) approved of my “proper” underthings,…I had to pull the bra out, away from my chest…and “shake” in the prescribed manner (to dislodge contraband)…empty all pockets, inspection of shoes and socks…and out…to the next station.
Yet another inventory of possessions…and then go wait at another gate.  Finally, a CO arrived to escort me through a huge MAZE of tall fencing, topped with razor wire to yet ANOTHER Set of gates.
After going thru the last set of gates, I entered the building and followed the arrows to the Visiting room!
In the next guest blog, I’ll tell you a little about my visit!

Sent from Out in Left Field

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83 Responses to MY FIRST VISIT TO DEATH ROW-Guest Blog by MamaVia

  1. renaes24 says:

    Mama, so good to see a new thread. It seems your experiences at a Texas Death Row were far different than mine. (Of course, I wasn’t going to ‘visit’ anyone). Back in 1980 or 1981, Death Row was in the “Ellis Unit” at Huntsville. I got a different view of it by coming in in a Medical ‘Chopper. (Usually another hospital system handled their helicopter transports but we got called in as the other ‘usual’ responders were tied up and would remain tied up for some time.)
    Of course we did not have to go thru the ‘sally-ports’, but it was weird all the same. I always found it strange that we were transporting someone on DEATH row…..to keep him from DYING of a massive heart attack (or whatever it turned out to be…it’s been too long). Other than the location of where we were, it was a pretty usual trip with 2 exceptions: #1 While we generally made it MANDATORY that shackles are removed, they would not allow that in this instance. (ironically, had it been necessary to ‘shock’ the patient, with all the metal on him, it could have electrocuted him right then and there and saved the State the trouble) #2) they always send ARMED guards with the prisoners from there. In this case, however, our fearless pilot REFUSED to allow the weapons aboard and in this he got his way. The guards could hop aboard, the weapons could not. (Course, they had police with weapons awaiting us at the heliport of the hospital). To this day, I have no idea of whatever happened to that patient, and yes, to me, he was a patient.
    From what I hear, they now no longer transport to hospital. Instead, if a procedure is needed and they can’t do it on-site, I think they just let nature do it’s thing. While I am not entirely comfortable with that thought……it is also strange to be called to ‘save’ someone only so they can be put to death by the state in a few years/months time. (Pound of Flesh?)

    • Mama Via says:

      I haven’t talked with any of the boys about what they have seen with “emergency situations”…but I WILL add this…one of “my boys” has had blood in his stools for the last six months, he has repeatedly asked for a doctor visit and has been denied. They’ve offered him “Tylenol” instead, as if THAT will cure the problem. Another one of my boys says that his glasses no longer correct his vision enough so that he can read…and the prison will not allow an appointment with a eye doctor. The third is a diabetic, and they do allow him his insulin, but he’s having an issue with losing the sensation in his feet, and he isn’t getting treatment for that, either.

      I’m VERY torn, ladies….as much as I believe that Arias deserves what ever she gets on Death Row…should we ignore the issues of those in the care of the state? Should we allow a man to have his feet amputated because of his diabetes? Allow a man to die because he developed cancer? Ignore his need to see things around him? (You know, that is close to my heart! Every morning when I wake up, I see a little less than I did the day before…and I’m grateful to have my corneal surgery lined up!). But what if Arias FOES develop cataracts or a corneal disease? Do we allow her to just go blind? Just say “oh, Wll, too bad, so sad!”

      I purposely know very little of these men’s crimes. I don’t want their actions of 20 years ago to taint what is happening today. But, most assuredly, I know that all three have killed someone…they wouldn’t be on death row if they hadn’t. The crime wax Heinous and Cruel, again, where they are, tells me that. Undoubtedly, there are people who wish these men the worst imaginable…cancer? Cool! Blind? Cool! Amputations? Cool!

      We all, each of us, no matter what we have or have not done…we each deserve to have at least one person who sees us in a different light. We all deserve a Gramma or a Mama, that no matter what we’ve done, still cares for us…someone who will see the good within us, will see us as something other than a number…and for these three men…I am that person…

      Many of you still have children, still work, still have active lives…Son doesn’t need me much any more…he’s older than a few of you…I looked forward to Elijah’s birth, that I would finally be Gramma..and with his death…I had a big empty spot…so, I guess “my boys” give me something to do other than watch TV! (cuz I SURE don’t want to go back to WORK!)

      What do yall think? How much health care do these men (and women) deserve? Allow nature to take its course? Or to withhold treatment?

      • Connie Rust says:

        Mama…I know u will probably think I’m awful for saying this….but if the states would carry out the DP sentence inside of 20 years those things would not be an issue. My only problem with the DP is that we don’t use it enough. I think once a DP sentence is handed down it should be carried out immediately….otherwise what’s the point? These people are cold blooded killers. They lost their rights as soon as they were convicted IMO. I would have told them to suck a big one before I would change my under clothes….for that matter I would not allow them to be looking at that in the first place….who’s the criminal? That’s a complete violation. If that is such a concern then death row inmates shouldn’t be allowed visitors.
        I know….I’m a cold bitch ……

      • Sherry says:

        As you probably know, Canada doesn’t have the DP, but I still think some people’s crimes are so heinous that they deserve it. What they don’t deserve is to die a slow agonizing death from cancer or going blind or having their feet amputated. If the DP is given, then it should be carried out and much sooner than 20 years.

        After 20 years on DR their crimes are so far in the past and so much has changed them that they seem like different people. It is sort of like Stabby staying on the stand for 18 days, the jurors felt like they knew her and couldn’t agree on the DP. But even that ‘special little snowflake’ as Queen Kelly calls her, doesn’t deserve to die slowly and painfully. As much as I hate to admit that. I’m pretty sure the reason most states went lethal injection over the electric chair (and for that matter to the chair vs the firing squad or hanging) is that they didn’t want the deaths to be cruel and unusual punishments. So if the DP is the sentence carry the darn thing out, get it over and done with.

      • Mama Via says:

        No, Connie, I do not think you are awful at all. Gramma used to say that”God made us all different to keep the world interesting!” If you think about it…it would be a pretty boring world, a boring life, if all we ever knew were people just like ourselves!

        I’m in complete agreement…if the states are going to HAVE a death penalty, yes, they should allow an appeal, but I don’t believe in appeal after appeal, after appeal…..admittedly, prior to DNA, there were many “doubts” left in convictions, as proven by the release of so many DR inmates proven innocent by the Innocence Project. But…I still have mixed feelings myself about the death penalty. It’s easy for me to sit on the sofa and say Arias deserves the DP…I’m not so sure how I would feel if I were REALLY a juror!

      • TrulyUSA says:

        I admire you for reaching out to people, Mama. Not sure I could do it, but I’m glad you can.

      • Ruthanne says:

        I think that there is something to be said for Karma, the Universe, God, whatever way you look at it, I think what they did landed them where they are and they have to suffer the consequences of that. If the system is broken things are not done that some think should be, it is all part of sleeping in the bed you made, ya know? And I pretty much agree with Connie too. I know in some cases there are appeals and such, but as soon as those are exhausted, carry out the sentence and be done with it. It costs way more to care for someone long term than to cover the injection.

  2. Yikes! Who the hell is the prisoner here??? 🙂

  3. lalori says:

    this makes me happy.

  4. BlueWhiteRed says:

    Mama, a reader asks, “My question is why she knows so many.on DR?”

  5. I was wondering the exact same thing. Great blog, by the way. Can’t wait to read the next one

  6. Mama Via says:

    Why does Mama know so many men on death row? You’d never guess that a little old (shrinking more every day) white lady would know anything but a bunch of other little old (shrinking more every day) white people! Well…the answer isn’t as compelling as it sounds…I joined a group from my Church (United Brethern) that writes to DR (mostly) and LWOP. Most of the men on Desth Roe have been abandoned by their families and friends and have no contact whatsoever with the outside world. Receiving letters can make a huge difference to their quality of life; prisoners tell me that my letters are their “sunshine” or their window on the world. Above all, they value being able to have a normal conversation with someone and the feeling that someone cares.

    I start every one of my letters in the same way; I introduce myself, tell them that I am an older married woman, and that if they are hoping for romantic letters instead, that they should let me know and I will write to someone else, instead.

    These men HUNGER for news of the world outside. Toney, who has been “inside” for 23 years now, has never seen a smart phone, except on TV commercials! Never seen a wide screen TV! He doesn’t see sunrises or sunsets…or the beach…he never goes on vacation.

    I originally became interested in “what happens on Death Row?” In 2003 when it was announced that Scott Peterson would be eligible for the Death Penalty. I’m glad that I wasnt a juror in THAT trial! I wondered what his life would be like on Death Row. All the stars aligned at the right time, I guess, my curiosity about these men on death row, and doing a little something to “give back”.

    When I was 11, my step brother was incarcerated. (His mother was my step-mother). When she died when I was 12, naturally, he wasn’t allowed to come to the funeral. My heart was touched by this, in spite if all the awful things he did to me, his mother and others. Perhaps that is a part of it too.

    My letters to these men are always about what Papa and I are doing, daily life, vacations, and such. I was christened “MamaVia” by Toney. His mother passed several years ago, he could not attend her funeral…he says my letters are his sunshine and salvation” and remind him of his mothers letters.

    This isn’t about their crimes, or their punishment…it’s about their humanity. I’ve cime to know more about myself, more about race relations, more about the issues affecting young people today. So, I’m pleased with the education and the friendship with someone I would have never known otherwise. I’m happy that I can bring “light” into some else’s life.

    • Realz says:

      Mama, I have to admit that I’m crying after reading your explanation about why you reach out to the death row men. I don’t know that I’m as caring or as generous as you but I’m so glad that you’re fulfilling a need in these men and have brought some humanity into their lives. You’ve made a difference.

      I guess the question could be asked, do they deserve your kindness and outreach, and I honestly don’t know the ‘correct’ answer. However, while they are awaiting their ultimate sentence to be carried out, it’s good that someone is impacting their hearts in a kind and positive way.

      Thank you for sharing your story. And, of course for your regular comments on RBMD’s blog.

    • wow! i had no idea! what insight~ thank you for sharing that, and thanks also, for being there for those lost abandoned souls! I’m sure it’s comforting for both you and the inmates, what a compassionate person you are. Keep it up! admire you, greatly!

  7. Sherry says:

    Momma with all you’ve been through it would be easy to be a bitter “little old (shrinking more everyday) white woman”. but you bring light into not only those DR prisoners, but to us on this blog too. Good for you. Thanks for the great blog.

  8. karen30036 says:

    Wow …what a nightmare!

    • Ruthanne says:

      Exactly my thoughts, just wow! It’s amazing anyone goes to visit anyone with ll they have to go through. Must make visitors feel like criminals too. I remember going with my sister to see her first husband, father of her kids, when I was little, (I am only 3 yrs older than her oldest child, my sister and I are 17 yrs apart), and I don’t recall much to do getting into the state pen, but it was early 70’s, and maybe with kids along its different? She didn’t get to see him face to face either, (he was in for murder), it was behind glass with the telephone, from what I remember. But I was a kid, and it was a long tie ago, who knows what the situation was or what has changed…

  9. Bazzethound says:

    Thanks Mama! I know it’s a personal question, so feel free to ignore…it gives me a giggle to imagine why a “little older married white lady” was wearing inappropriate undergarments.

    What’s the scoop? (If you feel like sharing)

    • Mama Via says:

      It’s HOT in Florida! I try not to wear anything I don’t have to!

      Actually, I hate to wear a bra because I have a mole on my back right exactly where the fasteners on a bra hit…and those fasteners happen to irritate the hell out of that mole…I’ve had it removed twice, and it keeps coming back..,so, I wear a blouse with built in shelf bra…

      (and shhhh…don’t tell any one–but…about 15 years ago, I had a golf-ball size tumor removed from one of my breasts…and one ended up looking bigger than the other…(my friends called me “Lefty”)…so, when I went to get it fixed…I still had hormones…so, I had them BOTH fixed…so THEY are much younger than *I* am…)

      Did I tell you how HOT it is in FLORIDA?

      • Bazzethound says:

        It’s cold as a witch’s boob in a brass bra here in Va, but I’ll still run out to the convenience store without a bra on under my layers!

        Thanks for the explanation. I guess those guards were overwhelmed with your newish jiggle and didn’t want you to cause a riot!

        Thanks for the giggles, Sweet dreams Mama.

      • TrulyUSA says:

        Haha! Mama I bet you’re a firecracker! Thanks for sharing!

      • Mama Via says:

        SSSSHHHHHHHHH! Don’t tell PAPA!

        Just before we got married…my hair was REALLY long…almost could sit on it…and one day, Papa said…Would you like me to make an appointment at the Spa for you? You could get a hair cut…and a massage….

        I tried to explain to him that I trimmed my own hair…I didn’t need a “hair cut”….

        He said…”well do you want to look like an “aging hippie”at the wedding?”

        “You make that sound like a BAD thing!” I said…

        That night…as I brushed my hair…I saw my Gramma instead of ME in the mirror…GRAMMA the hippie, actually…so….I got a hair cut…and the next time I went shorter…

        But, I still have my ankle tattoo!

      • renaes24 says:

        Wahoo Mama! You’ve got ta-ta’s and TATS? Now what else have you been hiding?

      • Mama Via says:

        You might be surprised at what mama is hiding! I was 21 when my little sister died…and I vowed to live life big enough “for the two of us”! …and I did! Thank goodness that I had a good foundation, built by Gramma, to never have been in any Trouble (with a capital T)…and at heart, I’m just Lilly-livered enough to get home before dawn so I can take a shower and go to work….and then, I got to old for that…

  10. First of all, tell our Kelly I sure hope she is feeling better real soon! Bless her heart…. Mama Via, this was a very interesting thread. How good of you to visit even the worst of the worst. My husband and I used to write a man who we found out about at church also, from someone on the ‘jail and prison’ ministry. The inmate was not on death row, but never got mail and seldom visitors. I think his only relatives was one sister who lived quite a few miles away and she just didn’t write letter. But, we got him gifts at Christmas, from his ‘prison approved’ list of things he could receive. They opened them, first, of course, and I’m sure they were not wrapped in wrapping paper when he got them, but he did get them. After several years, he had served his time and was released. He called us from his sister’s and told us he was going to church with her and had met some nice, kind people who had befriended him and were willing to help him, like to find a job and giving him clothes and things to help him get on his feet. That was the last we heard from him….

    But I don’t think I’d ever want to go and visit someone on death row. That would just be too mind blowing, as an honest, decent person to be on exhibit like you were. I mean, I don’t like showing anyone my ‘under garments’. But, I know they have to do those things. I’m sure if they did not, some would sneak in all kinds of contraband or dangerous weapons. I know I could never, in good conscience, go to visit Jodi Arias!! Never….

    I bet that visit wore you out!

    • Mama Via says:

      Well, I will write about the visit later…but, yes, there are MANY things they are trying to keep out of prison. #1 & 2 are cell phones and drugs. While it’s nice to think that the inmates would “only” use the cell phones to “call mom”…they don’t…gangs with cell phones continue to “run business” behind bars, drugs, prostitution, and murders. While *i* personally believe 420 should be legal in all 50 states, 420, heroin and meth are HUGE problems (as well as homemade hooch)…NOT just the issues of the consequences of being high and making bad decisions…but there is a complete “money lending” business in prison, which is just as dastardly as the streets of South Central. Remember when Arias “gave food” to another person “because she was hungry”? You and I out here may fall for that lie…BUT…a) it was against the rules b) at Estrella, they are given breakfast and a BIG sack lunch first thing in the morning, and fed again in the evening c) from what “my boys” tell me, Arias was “scamming”; prisoners don’t “give”, they TRADE…accepting a “gift” obligates the receipient…and you just want to avoid being obligated d) such “gifts can be the reason lots of fights to start, and the prison doesn’t want to mediate that either!

      #3 would be weapons of any sort..when I went thru the search process, they even checked my shoes to see if there was a secret compartment, or a spot where I was concealing a knife…whatever…

      At Union Correctional, in Raiford, there is no heat or air conditioning in the cells. Last year, I asked Toney if he wanted something special for his birthday/Christmas…his answer was that he really NEEDED sweatpants and a sweatshirt. He gave me the email address I could order from. (About the same price as Target) I ordered him two sweatshirts and a pair if pants for Christmas, and a magazine subscription for his birthday.

      When I went thru my “search”, by the way…it was just me and a female CO…and she was just “verifying” I HAD ON undergarments…and the answer was “no” because I was wearing a SKORT with built-in drawers and a blouse with a built in “shelf bra”…she reminded me that these men don’t get to see females…even old, snaggly teethed, shrinking women like me can “stir up those boys testosterone”!

      It felt VERY awkward to ADD a bra beneath the built-in shelf bra, and granny-panties under the built in pants under the SKORT…but, if LAYERS were her plan…I had LOTS of layers!

      • Connie Rust says:

        At the risk of looking like the village idiot….what is 420?

      • Samantha says:

        i have no idea where the expression comes from connie (maybe somebody else here can enlighten us!) but “420” is a nickname for marijuana.

      • trulyusa says:

        As a former hippie in the early 70s (it peaked later in the middle of the country, my older brother tried to tell me I was too late to the party, but I still claim ex-hippie!) 4:20 was the code name for “time to light up” and supposedly all the hippie were sitting around at “4:20” to do just that. It was all a rebel togetherness kind of thing!

      • Mama Via says:

        It originated up in San Rafael (CA) in the early 70s, when some school kids decided to meet and go in search of a hidden crop out in the hills…they agreed to meet at a certain spot at 4:20…and, it just kinda stuck. (All us old California hippies/PinkFloyd/DeadHeads used it to identify one another) (as if our clothes weren’t shouting it!)

      • TrulyUSA says:

        I had a friend who lived in the Haight Ashbury area during the Summer of Love. I envied her so!!!

  11. prefertobeanon2 says:

    Thank you for the guest blog! Appreciate the details–something I have never experienced or really thought about. Anxiously awaiting the next installment. Question: if your church assigned you JA years from now when all of her post cards have stopped coming and her family has grown tired or too resentful to visit — would you be as a kind, would you write, would you visit?

    • Mama Via says:

      prefer-I just don’t know the answer to that. I wish I could say “yes”…but I just don’t know. I’m tempted to believe that a Arias will always have supporters. The “famous” inmates always have plenty of letters and such…

      Did you read recently that Charles Manson was going to marry this crazy young woman…but didn’t…because she planned on putting his dead body on display and charging admission? Charlie didn’t like that idea very much….SMDH

  12. Samantha says:

    Hi Mamvia, thank you for this great new post! Truly a fascinating read, you really took us through thoses gates with you! I admire you for caring enough about fellow human beings to do such a thing, not many people could do it, for one reason or another! I look forward to hearing about the visit in a future post. Bless you!

  13. Jen Kane says:

    Sorry. Not feeling the love. Lets focus on the victims and their pain.

    • Samantha says:

      I hear you jen. I could not do it and that is my “one reason or another” right there, the victim or victims of these death row guys would definitely be in my heart and on my mind. I would have the victims too much in my mind to ever be able to bring pleasure to a murderer with a visit (not to mention all the trouble you would have to go through as outlined by Mamavia). I could never do it. But many churches do this sort of thing it’s true, and lucky for them there are people who do, because if were left up to most people, me included, i think they would be long forgotten before they were dead…. It’s an interesting discussion, and a difficult question to answer, the question is why do these murderers deserve any kindness at all? As Mamavia pointed out, the victims would be “cool” with it if they died from neglect. And as mentionned in a comment above too, why would you need a doctor to heal a man on death row? It’s tough for me the whole dilemma when it comes to other human beings in general. But how “human” are these beings we’re talking about, right? i know if someone had killed someone I love, I wouldnt want them to have any joy or comfort ever again!

      • Mama Via says:

        Jen and Samantha: I understand your feelings. I’ve lost most of my family, far before their time, not from some evil from without, but either by pure stupidity or pure accident. Perhaps if I had lost a family member to murder, I would feel differently than I do. I just don’t know. That is one of the reasons that I don’t make any attempt to discover WHAT these men have done, or WHO they have murdered. I try my best to see these men as their mother or auntie might see them. I know with at least one of them, I am the only person (other than maybe the chaplain) that doesn’t refer to him as 300807. I use his first name, and I address my letter to “Mr.” This man’s parents have passed, he has no siblings, no children. After my own parents were gone, my sister gone, even in my loneliest moments, I had my Son…even while he was on the submarine, away for 90 or more days, I knew he would “surface” eventually, and he would call. I could still get into my car and drive out to the beach, see other people, watch the sunset. I don’t condone what these men have done, but I do understand their isolation. I understand wanting someone to care about you, someone that will be “there” in your final moments.

        I don’t live anywhere fancy, I’m never hungry, I have enough clothes to leave in a pile in the laundry room, I have a better car than I’ve ever had before, and there is a man who loves me (in spite of my being a bleeding heart liberal) and in whose arms I go to sleep each night. I have endured the surprises life has thrown my way, and I am a very lucky lady! I am very blessed.

        While neither of you could do what I do, I would bet my last dollar that there is something your heart tells you to do…that I wouldn’t be able to do! That’s what makes us all beautiful! We all have a “gift” to give someone else in need.

        One of my aunties makes quilts for the homeless and wounded warriors, one of my cousins adopted her 4 grandchildren aged 6 months to 8 years, and is raising them as her own (and she’s 55!), another volunteers two nights a week as a rescue worker with an ambulance company. Yet another is a part of Doctors without Borders. Another works as a translator at an office helping migrant workers. So, everyone has something to give to make their world a better place…

      • trulyusa says:

        Awesome Mama — we are all used according to our talents, if we’re not self-absorbed twits, that is. I’ve always thought some people were placed in my path for a reason, and that reason was to reach out and help them and I have many times. I’ve been burned and I’ve also made lifelong friends, but I’ve never regretted the self-sacrifice, regardless of the final impact.

      • Samantha says:

  14. Joe Santos says:

    Excellent! & truly fascinating, thank you. Good week to ALL.

  15. Jacey Freestone says:

    Mama, I am in total agreement with you and am so relieved to finally see a post as compassionate as yours. As much as I dislike Arias and am horrified with what she did to Travis, and continues to do, I can not make that leap to be her final judge with life and death. There are innocent people who are in prison ed and even on DR. Reading about your corporal works of mercy brings a peace to me that I have not experienced since I began following this trial many years ago. I have grown sick of the hateful comments and posts and at times have felt the evilness of JA infecting all those posting. Thank you for this post. I choose to follow you. That is my free will.

    • Mama Via says:

      Thank you for the kind words, Jacey! I think that it’s easy to say arias deserves the Death Penalty…but it’s an entirely different thing to be the person on the jury voting for it. I know my own comments about Arias have been made in sheer frustration of the system being manipulated by a defendant and her defense team. Our Founding Fathers never meant for justice to be delayed for this length of time. They also had no idea that there would be DNA! Many say “JODI is a master manipulator”–she isn’t….she’s just a half fast manipulator….if she had been a MASTER…she would have had the wherewithal to make up a batter story…she would have been able to coax a little remorse out of those acting skills…produced some crocodile tears…

      I have read a lot about Leslie Van Houghten and Patricia Krenwinkle, and what amazing things they have done for themselves and others while incarcerated. They are truly the results of a prison system that focuses on reform not punishment. At one time, both were on Death Row, and were vilified just as much as Arias is today. If I remember correctly, Leslie has had 17-18 parole hearings, and at every single one, Sharon Tate’s sister is there, to explain WHY she shouldn’t receive parole. (I see the ALEXANDER Sisters doing the same thing in the future)

      But the time for a “coming clean” and showing “true remorse” has already passed. Arias has been found guilty; the only question is the conditions in which she will be kept for the rest of her life. With the “privatization” of the penal system, where profits, not rehabilitation are the prime objective, I don’t hold much hope for Arias in the future. She really needs some deep counseling. What she makes of her incarceration is going to be up to her.

  16. Carmen Geditt says:

    Excellent and fascinating post MamaVia. Thank you!
    Have a beautiful day!

  17. Schaeffer says:

    I have also had to visit someone in prison, but I had to do it with a baby; I was taking the child I was adopting to see her birth mother. The prison I visited also had a strict visitor approval process, and after I filled out my information, passed being investigated by the State Bureau of Investigation from two states (I lived in different state than the prison), etc., I had to get a judge to order my date of birth, social security number and home address redacted from the copy the prisoner had to sign for her consent. All I needed when trying to adopt a child was an arrest for drugs or prostitution to show up, or for her to get my SS#.

    Taking a baby to prison is another extra layer of hassle. I couldn’t take the diaper bag or a bottle into the visiting room, I had to lock it in a locker with all my other stuff (babies need a LOT of stuff). The guards inspected the baby’s diaper right before we went in, and if it had to be changed during the visit, I not only had to go out and do it in front of a guard, at least two inches of diaper cream had to be dispensed and discarded before I could apply it. If the baby needed a bottle, I had to go out to the lobby area to feed her. Since all that of that sashaying back and forth cuts into the visitation time, I learned quickly to arrange the baby’s eating, sleeping, and diapering schedule accordingly. And of course, anytime you leave the visitation room, you have to go through the entire inspection process again. (By the way, the metal detectors in that prison were extremely sensitive — I had to take a pony tail holder out of my hair because that tiny piece of metal set the thing off.)

    I gave myself a start the first time I passed inspection and then walked up to a gate in the sally port and just naturally reached for the handle. When it didn’t open, I jerked my hand back like I’d been electrocuted.

    After the birth mother had been in prison for a while, she participated in a parenting class, which entitled her to an hour or two with the baby without me. After all the inspection process, I went down a hall and walked to a yellow line on the floor. The birth mother came up on the other side of the line, and I handed the baby over. Any breach of the yellow line by either party terminated the visit, and the process was reversed for me getting the baby back, including having her diaper and diaper bag searched.

    All of these rules and regulations do seem an invasion of privacy, and completely ridiculous for law abiding citizens, but then, our minds don’t work like the vast majority of prisoners. It is essential to remember they are for a reason, many of them are put in place AFTER a problem has arisen, like someone smuggling drugs or weapons or money in through a diaper, a tube of diaper cream, a bottle, etc., and since I had no desire to be caught in a prison riot or anything else that passes for entertainment in a maximum security prison, I was more than willing to comply. In prison, virtually anything can be turned into a valuable commodity, and even someone sneaking a note in or out can be extremely dangerous — it might be a hit list or an escape plan, or who knows what. These people have nothing to do but sit around and think up ways around the rules, any rules, because by and large that is their mindset.

    WOBO bitched about being disciplined for buying food for another prisoner “who was hungry” from her commissary account. She tried to spin it as unfair, but the fact is, one package of honey buns has the potential to be traded for a lot of things, maybe even just protection. At Christmas, prisoners (I am speaking only of the prison I visited) could request a few things from someone on their visitor’s list, but they had to choose from a very short list of approved items like sweats, socks, flannel shirts, or t-shirts, and still there were a lot of rules. In the case of my prisoner, no hoodies, no gray, black, or dark blue clothing (escape risk), nothing that might be part of gang symbolism, and nothing with a value of more than $10 or $20 — I can’t remember exactly, but I know this was especially true of sneakers, they had to be a non-name brand. There is a limit to what they can request, and anything not on their list is thrown away. For instance, if a prisoner requests 3 pairs of socks, and someone sends them 4 pairs, the extra pair is thrown away before the prisoner ever sees it; someone can send less than 3 pairs but not more. The only way prisoners could get books was if they were sent directly from the publisher, and they had to have the covers removed and the pages fanned by the guards to ensure nothing was secreted in the spine or between the pages. Before being shared with another prisoner, they were inspected again, in case there were any notes or contraband. (Someone we know has tried that trick and got caught. She thought she was so clever, but the prisons are onto that little scam.)

    It was some fun taking a baby on a round trip of more than 3,000 miles, staying in a hotel, taking a ferry to prison, visiting prison twice in one day — our visit together, then her visit alone — and coming back — all in three days! I am glad it didn’t last long, and am even more glad that my child has no memory of any of it. I hope my prison visiting days are over.

    • Mama Via says:

      God bless you for doing all of that, Schaeffer! I’m sure all your baby remembers is that she’s got a wonderful loving parent protecting her…ever since she can remember!! Like my cousin, who adopted (legally) her grandchildren…it’s something you and she are able to do…something that just isn’t within me….all four of the children she received were high on meth the night she got them…all were sleeping in the same room that their mother was smoking in…then, the hell she went thru as those children went thru withdrawl … Oh, oh, oh! God bless you and that lovely child!

  18. Schaeffer says:

    Juror dismissed.

  19. Schaeffer says:

    Brace yourselves for a motion for mistrial.

  20. Schaeffer says:

    TWO jurors dismissed.

    • TrulyUSA says:

      Schaeffer, I think I read that Stabby is not going to allocute because she wants it sealed and the Judge said no, but we can clear the courtroom for you and she said “that’s not what I want! Give me what I want or I’m taking my checkers and going home!” Do you really think she will pass on her last chance to address the jurors? I think she’ll come back tomorrow, and say “changed my mind! I can do that anytime I want, see?” What do you think? Will she change her mind, and if so, will JSS allow her to change her mind?

      • Schaeffer says:

        Truly, I have no idea. I think the entire day was bizarre, from jurors getting dismissed to the defense resting and WOBO refusing to allocute if she didn’t get her way. She may very well change her mind; I suppose she can do that anytime right up until the jury retires for deliberations, and if there is even the slightest room for the Judge to maneuver, she will relent.

        If she refuses to allocute tomorrow or whenever, she might come off as weak, which I don’t think she can bring herself to do. If she does decide to speak, she will undoubtedly stress she is being picked on by the AZ judicial system and has “so much more” she wants to say but “just can’t” because she is so afraid. I don’t know if she allocutes after Juan has given his summation if he can do a follow up. If she can figure out a way to avoid being followed by Juan, she will do it in a hot minute.

        The other day I told Mama that if WOBO is so afraid of postcard wielding mailmen, as she said in chambers, she should get her ass right over to Perryville’s death row, because that place is undoubtedly secure! If anyone on the jury has ever visited someone in jail or prison, they will now how absurd it is to imply somebody from the outside would get to her. She should be far more afraid of an inside job.

      • TrulyUSA says:

        I guess we will see, for some reason, I think she still has a card or two up her sleeve that she’s going to play. She will NEVER show true remorse, it is literally impossible for her.

  21. renaes24 says:

    Is Stephens doing it AGAIN? Now we are hearing that courtroom MIGHT be cleared for Stabby to allocute. Rumor says they will put them in the ‘overflow’ room instead. What the hell is going on in this court?

  22. Jen Kane says:

    I am a domestic abuse counsellor . While I appreciate all the thoughtful remarks, I just think of victims. Does Jodi Arias deserve compassion. I think not. I will save mine for TA family.

    • TrulyUSA says:

      I feel so badly for the Alexanders! I can’t imagine living through all these years with no resolution. Let’s hope they receive the justice they seek!

  23. Schaeffer says:

    I swear, if WOBO laid down in front of the jury and threw a temper tantrum like a two-year old, with kicking feet, pounding fists, tears, and screaming at the top of her lungs, she could not come off as any more bratty.

    She is a revolving bitch; she is a bitch any way you turn her!

    • Mama Via says:

      I agree, Schaeffer! Too bad the jury did not see this temper tantrum! Instead, all they’ve got is a two day “woe is me, I screwed everyone” half fast testimony-that Juan never questioned her on…I am too frustrated by what I DO know to think like a juror today! Prayers for the Alexander Family! RIP, Travis, justice is coming soon!

  24. Mama Via says:

    Gramma used to say that you can’t plant rhubarb and expect corn! In Arias’ case, she’s spent all her life being selfish and self absorbed! Trust me…if all the “innocent” people were let out of prison…the prisons would be empty…in a week or two (hopefully not 2-3months) she will be joining people like herself- the worst of the worst. If she can’t “fake” a little remorse now, when she most needs to do so….the road ahead is very rough for her…and she’s going to be with the big girls…

    I wouldn’t go visit Perryville if you paid me!

  25. mrsmojojojo says:

    Well…the defense rested. Never thought it would happen. As I sit here wondering how Juan will sum up tomorrow, my heart is going out to the Alexander family. Apparently they left in tears. Tears of relief, tears of fear, tears of exhaustion. Which ever way this goes, I pray they find peace. 7 years is long, long haul, they must be so spent. I don’t think I could ever be death qualified…too much of a wimp. Its strange but the axiom “when you seek revenge, you dig two graves” is ever present. This is not a criticism, I’d do the exact same thing if I were them. Jodi sought revenge and dug two graves, the Alexanders seek revenge, I pray the bitch only took the better part of 7 years, and not the balance of their lives. Does anyone know if Stabby’s dad ever showed up for this charade? He strikes me as a straight shooter. I wonder what the jury will do…..

    • Schaeffer says:

      I think her dad was there only the first day this time around. To me, having her mother there everyday throughout both trials but never speaking on her behalf is far more damaging than if she were not there at all. If she weren’t there, a juror might think “poor baby, she is all alone.” However, when WOBO won’t speak to her mother, and Sandy won’t speak to or for her daughter, it sends a strong, and negative, message, especially in light of what WOBO said during her testimony. It is obvious there is no love lost there.

      • Brandy says:

        no, the dad was not there, but Stabby’s sister showed up today and there is a lovely picture of Sandy and Angela in a car with the biggest smiles on their faces! What a messed up family, the daughter is facing death and they act like they are one big happy family.

  26. Brandy says:

    What a bizarre turn of events today! Just read that both of Juan’s past cases neither one allocated, One got DP and the other got Life. so either way it is still a toss up, Hopefully for Death!

  27. Brandy says:

    It was reported the male Juror that dressed like a cowboy was against the DP. Well how the hell did he get on that Jury to begin with? Juror 5 and 12 were dismissed, the female juror was reported to have left in tears.

  28. Brandy says:

    Maybe we will get a verdict by tomorrow evening for Death, nothing surprises me anymore with the dysfunctional trial!

  29. Brandy says:

    It should only take a total of approx. 3 hours for closing for both sides and then give to jurors! oh and then I guess there are juror instructions that will have to happen. Praying for verdict by Wed at the lastest right around the full moon. then again that Full Moon could cause even more drama. Praying for Justice for the Alexander family!

  30. Mama Via says:

    Well, here is some food for thought…now, you must remember that my “mom” passed in 67, my dad & only sister in 76….so…but…I THINK that if I were wrongfully accused…or even accused of acting in “self-defense”…SOMEONE would come and say I’m a good person, that I have something to give…even a recluse like ME has SOME friends! I haven’t worked in 15 years…so no one there…I don’t go to CHURCH (but I go to Star meetings, which are almost church) (so, maybe someone would say I make yummy macaroons!)…oh, my vet would say I’m not one of her PITA patients! My pain management doc could say I’m a whiny old bat, my son would say “omg, can she give a f-ing lecture or what? And my DH would say “she won’t quit talking in the middle of my program!” And my dear, dear sister/cousin…in between trying to get four children under 8 under control….could tell all my secrets….so she is definitely a maybe!

    Can you IMAGINE for just a moment…NOT Testifying FOR your CHILD??

    I wouldn’t care WHAT my son had done…wild horses wouldn’t keep me off the stand…to tell the jury what I felt for my son, the light he puts into my life.

    I do not understand sandy. Not one bit! No wonder Arias is the way she is!

    • Jacey Freestone says:

      What have you heard from Kelly? I wish she was here for this.

    • Leslea says:

      I agree with everything you said. I’d do ANYTHING for my kids & I had 2 wooden spoons!! One in the car & one on top of the fridge!! Just in case.lol I bought slotted spoons. I was mostly all threat.lol Now they’re grown.:)
      I was out today. Where’s the 2nd best blog to get todays rundown? Anyone? Thanks in advance:)

      • TrulyUSA says:

        It is strange that a mother could sit there through this whole trial and not be COMPELLED by the love for her child to do something!!

  31. renaes24 says:

    Oh good Gad! Twitter (both sides) is all up in arms because JSS asked Stabby if she had taken her/any meds today. People are complaining “that violates HIPPA” . Since Stabby replied she did not take meds, people think it is appealable just because Dr Goofner (I do like that name) said at his last appearance…when asked if JA could be bi-polar…that she was given some meds and it seemed to help her. . FINE. Here is what I see: Lets get to the HIPPA first.
    HIPPA does NOT apply in this case. #1 JA was ASKED and she ANSWERED. It is not like they went behind her back & sneaked into her medical records….which would not violate it anyway (in this case) as HIPPA does not pertain to courts or jails or prisons.
    2) as to Stephens asking about meds: it is ALWAYS asked of a defendant before a plea bargain is made/before a judge allows for pro-se status and anytime there is a difference between an attorney & a client. It is also asked when something unusual is happening.
    3) Not all meds make a difference anyway. Aspirin or vitamins or a gazillion other drugs do not count. The drugs the court is interested in are generally either psychotropic or opioids (along with a few other categories) of which the court would be well alerted to by either the jail/bailiff/ or the attorney (in chamber).
    I took Dr Goofner to be saying that JA was so ‘anxious’ or ‘whatever’ that they TRIED some drug and it calmed her down but that was the end of it. If she was still being medicated, she would have an entirely different demeanor in court. (She would probably fall asleep at times or be drowsy or slur or have a staggered gait.) Believe me. the COURT WOULD BE AWARE. There is NO WAY Stephens would have allowed her pro-se status (earlier ) if she had been on medication. Calm down people please.

    • Mama Via says:

      Interesting…actually, I was asked by the court if I was under the influence of drugs when I signed the divorce settlement agreement with my ex….I said “no, Your Honor, I am not, I just want this to be over and done.” (She then reminded me that I was giving up alimony, and was I aware of that? And I answered “yes your Honor, no amount of money is worth the emotional turmoil it takes to enforce the order.”). So, I think JSS was just doing “Due Diligence”…that an appeal could not be made by saying “Goofner SAID in court she was medicated! Pathetic a Court a KNEW that! And Arias didn’t know what rights she was giving up!” Reversible Error!

  32. Deni says:

    Your blog made me feel a little differently than maybe most people. Although I think your heart is in the right place, I do think people tend to forget the families and the lifelong devastating effects this has on them. My cousins 19 year old son was murdered in 1999. He was selling a car and the murderer had test driven it one day and wanted to come back with his girlfriend to test drive it a few days later. They came back a 2nd time.It was a stick shift and My cousin was in the front passenger seat teaching the girlfriend how to drive it with the murderer in the back seat. After about an hour or so, the murderer shot him in the back of the head several times. Then the face. Then they dumped him in the woods. He wasn’t found for several days. The murderer continued to drive the stolen car until it was on the news then hid it. This wasn’t this mans first murder, he had murdered another man a month before. He got the death penalty but is still appealing. Although I’m not very close to the family, we have a huge family with cousins spread all over, I will say the poor family has suffered every day. His elderly grandparents were never the same, and I truly believe this added to their deaths and made their remaining years full of sadness and grieving for their grandson. His father has been in agony and has had many many illnesses and been hospitalized many times after this happened. Again, I believe losing His son has everything to do with his illnesses and struggles in life. He just has been a truly heartbroken man and without his faith, I don’t think he would have survived. This bastard didn’t just murder A 19 year old son. He murdered a entire family. They grieve for him every day and miss him still horribly. I read you talk to these men on the phone and are going to visit? I thought of my family when I read that. They can’t send him a letter with their everyday chitchat. They cant talk to him on the phone. I know they would give everything they own just to hear his voice one last time. I read earlier that you do not know their crimes other than they murdered?? Forgive me, but I think it isn’t right for you not to know who they killed, how and the circumstances. The victims names matter. Their lives mattered! Their murders matter! The victims, even tho the crimes were committed 20 years ago still matter! They are loved and missed still …. no matter how long ago they were taken. The victims need to be remembered. I think you are a really kind person and I do not mean to offend. I also think when murder touches your family, you might think differently about the death penalty. Then again, maybe not.

  33. Sherry says:

    Man, after all the work and research our Queen Kelly has put into following on this trial and recapping it for all of us, it kinda sucks that it is ending so abruptly when she’s so sick. Kelly, we all miss you. Feel better soon.

  34. Ruthanne says:

    Hey Kelly! I couldn’t comment on the previous post about you being ok, but after reading others’ comments I am wondering what you did, or didn’t do, that may have been opposite from what you should have? If you get what I’m saying, it sounded like you weren’t taking care of yourself, or maybe not following drs orders? Whatever it was, stop it! Do what you should/need to, and take care of yourself. We all need you to be well.
    I was sick myself for about 10 days, not really over it, and still on antibiotics, but not considering myself sick anymore as I am functional once again. I was pretty bad also, and away from everything and everyone for the entire 10 days. I didn’t even get to the dr until day 7 because I couldn’t get out of bed. I probably should have gone to the hospital, def to the dr sooner at least, with my immune system being compromised already, but when I say I couldn’t, I couldn’t, and I was delirious a good portion of that first week with high fever. Frankly I’m lucky it didn’t get worse.
    So when you CAN take care of yourself, please do so.

    And Mama, great post, very informative and interesting! I’m looking forward to part 2.

    That said, does anyone know how Kelly is? What’s going on with her health? I’m probably out of the loop since I was out of it literally for a bit, so any info to bring me to speed is greatly appreciated. 🙂

    So glad this is coming to an end, but wish Kelly was enjoying that with us…

  35. CarlT says:

    Wow! What a great group of people in this blog! When I started reading the different opinions on the DP, my first thought was “ah lawd, this is gonna turn bad and go down hill FAST”. How refreshing to read an adult conversation with adults. Not one single argument. No condescending posts. No name calling. No swear words (if there were none are standing out in my mind). Hate is such a strong word. How can you hate someone you don’t know? I hate the violent act of murder JA did and the circus she made of the court system, but to say you hate her, that always confused me in other blogs. Some of those people in those blogs are ruthless and makes me glad I am not their friends in real life! Kelly should be very proud of the posters/readers she has attracted to this blog.

    That being said… I’m not sure of my views on the DP.
    1. Is it an easy way out of the punishment? Should they spend the rest of their lives thinking of the crime and thinking of all the things in the free world they are missing?

    2. The cost (correct me if I am wrong) wouldn’t it be cheaper to pay for LWOP than the DP? In DP cases the right of appeal is at the expense of the tax payers, LWOP appeals are at the expense of the convicted? With the cost of just trial at over 3 million, I can’t imagine how much the cost would be for an appeal. Someone has to pay the appeal attorney’ to read thru the gazillions of pages. (However they could read faster than listen to and watch KN talk) will that be at the expense of tax payers?

    Now question for today… Does each side have an alloted amount of time for closing or can KN retry the case for the next 2 weeks dragging it out even longer?….. At some point he’s gotta be saying … Get this damn case over and thank God I’m not an appeal atty!

    Again, what a fantastic group of people we have in this blog! 😍
    I look first thing every morning to see if Kelly is back yet. Thank you Mama and Blue for sharing your articles to keep it going. And, the regular posters for commenting too! (I would call you out by name but don’t want to leave anyone out and hurt their feelings!)

    • renaes24 says:

      I have very mixed feelings about the death penalty. While there are some folks that you just don’t want to let ‘play in the sandbox’ ever again, and the world would be a better place without……..it does concern me that we are all human and mistakes can and are made.
      You cannot undo death.
      That said, I can see a death sentence in some cases. But to give it I would need to have film (security camera etc), photos (a la Stabby) and/or DNA. Without any of those, I know I could not vote for death.
      All of that aside, it is FAR cheaper to feed & house someone for life than to have to deal with all the costs of the Death Penalty & all it’s endless appeals.
      I also have a problem with the way we do executions. To me, this lethal injection crap is like something you do to a faithful pet when it is time to put it out of its misery. I think it is far too ‘gentle’ and it is done way to long after the offense.

      • TrulyUSA says:

        Carl, you are so right about this blog, I love it here because no one is put down for their differing opinions and it is the variety of opinions expressed without animosity that I love! I am divided, kinda like Renae above, some deserve to die if they are proven without doubt to be monsters run amuck with deadly intent in our society (I would not hesitate to execute Jihadi John). Some deserve to be locked up for life, which some think would be a worse fate but humans have an unbelievable capacity to evolve into their surroundings and make it work for them, so we have to be careful there. The main thing I try to do is to remember the victim and judge the crime by the cruelty and suffering the victim experienced, and the reason they experienced it. For instance, if somebody repeatedly sexually molested a child, that bastard should die. If somebody killed someone for molesting their child, that’s a different story. Killing is wrong regardless, but I could understand that kind of passion. So they are all as unique as the people who commit the crime and each stands on its own, in my book. I think WOBO pushed me over to the death penalty for her because of the premeditation and manipulation, right up to the moment of death she played with Travis and terrorized his life. Sure he was a player and had other women – so what? It’s not like WOBO did not know, she saw it with her own two stalking eyes. She knew it from the hacking she did on his computer and the sneaking into his phone. She could have walked away but that was not enough. If she couldn’t have him nobody would, and that is why I think she should face death.

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