By Margaret Edds
How is it attainable for an blameless guy to come back inside of 9 days of execution? An Expendable guy solutions that query via targeted research of the case of Earl Washington Jr., a mentally retarded, black farm hand who was once convicted of the 1983 rape and homicide of a 19-year-old mom of 3 in Culpeper, Virginia. He spent virtually 18 years in Virginia prisons—9 0.5 of them on dying row—for a homicide he didn't commit.This ebook finds the relative ease with which people who dwell at society's margins will be wrongfully convicted, and the extreme trouble of correcting this sort of flawed as soon as it occurs.Washington was once ultimately freed in February 2001 no longer a result of criminal and judicial structures, yet despite them. whereas DNA trying out was once significant to his eventual pardon, such exams might by no means have happened with no an surprisingly gifted and dedicated criminal crew and with out a sequence of incidents which are most sensible defined as natural luck.Margaret Edds makes the chilling argument that another “expendable males” in all likelihood were much less lucky than Washington. This, she writes, is “the mystery, shameful underbelly” of America's retention of capital punishment. Such wrongful executions won't ensue frequently, yet an individual who doubts that blameless humans were carried out within the usa may still take into account the impressive sequence of occasions essential to store Earl Washington Jr. from this type of destiny.
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Additional info for An Expendable Man: The Near-Execution of Earl Washington, Jr.
Blood seemed to be everywhere. A broken dining room chair lay on the ﬂoor. Items were scattered out of place. Hurrying down the hall, Weeks found his mother on the bedroom ﬂoor. Hazel Weeks was coherent, but she was unable to get up by herself because of the knee replacements. She had taken some pieces of used bedsheet that she kept for rags and was pressing them against her skull to stop the bleeding. He helped her to the bed. His wife arrived and began tending to his mother. Jimmy went out to wait for the rescue squad and the sheriff.
There was a wide-eyed look and a half-smile on his face, nothing belligerent, and a sort of nervous twitching. Over the next couple hours of questioning, “He moved constantly. He never sat still,” the ofﬁcer recalled. The interview began with a patient recital of Washington’s Miranda rights. Terry Schrum was no expert in mental retardation. His police training barely touched on the subject. The beefy lawman was, according to acquaintances, a tough, straight-arrow cop who wanted to see the guilty brought to justice and did not believe in lying on the stand or abusing a prisoner to get there.
He asked. Washington nodded, yes, and signed the form. The questioning began. “I understand that you made some statements about stabbing a woman in Culpeper,” Wilmore said. “Did you stab the woman? ” The question was greeted with silence. Washington hung his head and pressed his hand to his forehead. Wilmore switched to more general questions to get the prisoner talking. What was his birth date? Where did he go to school? Who did he work for? ” This time Washington nodded. ” Wilmore asked. “I don’t know,” Washington said.
An Expendable Man: The Near-Execution of Earl Washington, Jr. by Margaret Edds