May 6, 2010

Andre Thomas, sentenced to death for killing his wife and 2 children, plucked out his eyes and then argued that his blindness made the death penalty unconstitutional.

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals said that the question whether he is a continuing threat to society is to be answered at the time of conviction. 

97 comments:

Michael Hasenstab said...

The "I gots no eyeballs" defense will fail. He had eyeballs when he committed the crime.

Scott said...

The traditional example of the word chutzpah is the man who kills his parents; and then, in court, pleads for clemency because he's an orphan.

Life imitates art.

GMay said...

"...he cut out the hearts of his wife and two children and pocketed them..."

Totally irrelevant whether or not the guy is insane and a threat to society; this guy doesn't deserve life.

veni vidi vici said...

Scott wins the thread on the second volley.



wv: "hympap" -- the first-timer's smear campaign.

Scott said...

@veni vidi vici: I just win the easy ones. :)

ChuckC said...

"Clearly crazy but legally sane"....that describes half the people I know!

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Can you imagine if he won this case? (not that I think that he will) How many other death row inmates would follow his example?

- Lyssa

Joe said...

Now the Death Penalty IS Cruel and Unusual, he won't be able to see the needle coming!

Joe said...

I oppose the Death Penalty, but this guy joins the list of folks whom IF God said, it was "Ok" I'd GLADLY pull the switch on.

Just because he has no eyes does not make this guy no threat! this is a seriously dangerous and deranged fellow....

Class factotum said...

alleged that his blindness means he is no longer a danger to society.

But that's not the only reason to put people in prison (or execute them). I'm OK with vengeance.

paul a'barge said...

Apparently no one told the guy that it's "an eye for an eye" and not "an eye for a heart".

EDH said...

In the meanwhile, I hope one of the other inmates has the decency to skull-fuck this guy.

Quayle said...

I recently sat through oral arguments in front of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals on the issue of whether a convicted murderer can be forced to take his medications so that he will be sane enough to be executed.

Alex said...

Maybe it's this guy's religion to murder his wife & child and cut their hearts out. Who are we to judge?

Hoosier Daddy said...

I oppose the Death Penalty, but this guy joins the list of folks whom IF God said, it was "Ok" I'd GLADLY pull the switch on.

I always wondered why some people oppose the death penalty but reserve the right for certain cases? Yeah what he did was henious but murder is murder isn't it? If I shoot you in the head, you're just as dead as if I shot you in the head and then cut your heart out.

Joe said...


always wondered why some people oppose the death penalty but reserve the right for certain cases? Yeah what he did was henious but murder is murder isn't it?


Short Answer: No.

Longer Answer: No, neither legally nor morally is murder, murder. The AVERAGE murder or more technically correct the MODAL Murder involves two individuals, who know each other, are substance-impaired, and are in an argument..it is the ONLY murder that the murderer will ever commit, though most likely not the only crime. In short, MOST murder involves Bubba an’ Cooter, drinkin’, an’ they fallsta argu’n ‘bout Velma Lou, as to whether Velma cottons to Bubba more’n Cooter or the ree-verse. In the ensuing melee Bubba kills Cooter. Bubba will most likely never kill again.

This guy, killed three people, at close range with a knife, cut their hearts out and then proceeded to walk away with those organs as a trophy. He has not only once, but TWICE removed one of his own eyes, in order that he might avoid the Death Penalty. The last items are a coolly calculated plan to avoid the Death Penalty. This is one seriously cold, seriously committed, seriously deranged customer. He is worlds and away a far cry from Bubba.

I oppose the Death Penalty, for this guy OR Bubba, but I do say IF God said it was “OK” I would have very little trouble sleeping at night were I to pull the switch. As God is not in the habit of speaking to me on these matters, I doubt I will have to worry about it. I said what I said to suggest that yes I understand there IS evil in the world….but usually there is a solution that does not involve killing….USUALLY.

traditionalguy said...

The Texas Rangers got their man, as usual. The equality of treatment offered Texans adds with it a terrible responsability for their actions that they cannot easily shake off.

Skyler said...

Just another day to be proud to be Texan.

edutcher said...

traditionalguy said...

The Texas Rangers got their man, as usual. The equality of treatment offered Texans adds with it a terrible responsability for their actions that they cannot easily shake off.

Too bad the Rangers didn't deal with this animal in the traditional Ranger fashion.

Seven Machos said...

What's interesting here to me are two things:

1. Why, presumably, is being a danger to society a prerequisite for a death sentence for a crime already committed?

2. People go pretty far to continue to live. Keep that in mind next time you argue that maybe euthanasia is a good idea.

Ann Althouse said...

"Apparently no one told the guy that it's "an eye for an eye" and not "an eye for a heart"."

Even if it were, he'd still need another eye.

Joe said...

Why, presumably, is being a danger to society a prerequisite for a death sentence for a crime already committed?

Because the Death Penalty isn’t JUST for the murder, it’s imposed because of “special Circumstances” usually those circumstances involve the commission of another felony, but can include particularly heinous acts. So you get the Death Penalty not for killing someone, but for showing a horrific indifference to human life, suggesting that IF one the street once again, you’d take more human life. So crowding all the customers and staff of the 7-11 into the stock room and killing them, in order that there be no witnesses, gets you the Death Penalty. Not the killings per se, but the reasoning behind the killings. You OBVIOUSLY don’t value human life very much in this case, and the reasoning goes that if you were released you’d be a good bet to herd more victims into the stock room and do it again.

This case suggests ole’Andre gets into a pretty dangerous kind of rage when people cross him. He gets angry and vicious enough to kill you with a knife and then desecrate your body. It’s not just the killing, it’s the heinous nature of the crime and the cold-bloodedness of it, Andre is a danger to all of us, not just the person he murdered.

Pogo said...

Just require him to remove another solid organ, every 6 months. He seems to have the skills.

Mission accomplished soon enough, if piecemeal.

Drew W said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Drew W said...

I knew that stocking Sophocles in the prison library would lead to copycat tragedies like this.

Oedipus Rex, Oedipus Rex
Oedipus won’t be needin’ his specs
’Cause he killed his pa and he married his ma
They don’t even do that in Arkansas


--“Oedipus Rex”; Kevin Burke’s Open House

Seven Machos said...

Joe -- I disagree. The death penalty is for particularly heinous crimes. Period.

If it's any consolation, I do believe it's overused and any case involving the death penalty should automatically bring many extra protections and very good defense lawyers provided by the state at no cost.

That said, there is no question that this excuse for a human being richly deserves to die.

Lance said...

lyssa...
Can you imagine if he won this case? (not that I think that he will) How many other death row inmates would follow his example?

Hm. How about this question: is blindness a sufficient punishment for murder? Or is it not enough of a punishment?

What if, instead of blinding himself, he had somehow succeeded in critically and permanently damaging his brain. Would you still want him executed?

A tangent: would it be valid for the state to impose permanent blindness as a punishment for murder? Would the Eighth Amendment prohibit such a punishment?

Lem said...

Even if it were, he'd still need another eye.

Are you saying a third eye is not covered by Obamacare?

Ann Althouse said...

Don't assume that he plucked out his eyes in order to be able to make the argument that he was no longer dangerous. There is evidence that he was seeking forgiveness from God. Consider this:

On March 30, 2004, at 5:00 p.m., jail psychologist Cactus Robin McGirk examined Thomas to apprise officials what kind of mental health care and treatment the prisoner would need during his pre-trial incarceration. He diagnosed Thomas as a “paranoid schizophrenia” with a “considerably impaired” judgment process.

It was three days later, on April 2, that Thomas’ “considerably impaired” judgment manifested itself. While being held in a “holding cell” in the jail, he continued to have regular conversations with God. Following one of these conversations, he stuck a finger into his eye socket and plucked out one of his eyeballs. He told jail authorities that he had been reading the Bible and knew it was “God’s will” that he remove the eye so as to earn divine favor.


There is some similar evidence about the crime itself:

Like all defense attorneys, [Thomas's lawyer] knew the jury expected to hear some expression of “remorse.” It was after all a murder case. But how could Thomas possibly express remorse for repeatedly stabbing Laura, Andre and Leyha to death before removing their hearts from their lifeless bodies? Remorse would have repudiated God. It was God who told him that Laura had been a “jezebel” and little AndrĂ© was the “anti-Christ.” It was God who told him these people were “evil” and had to be killed. Even killing these evildoers was not enough to really garner God’ favor! Thomas believed he had to stick his own fingers into his eye socket and pluck out one of his eyeballs in order to secure God’s absolute favor.

What juror in his/her right mind could expect this deranged lunatic to be capable of remorse? What rational, reasonable juror would have said: “Well, I might would have spared his life had he only shown me a little true remorse?” These jurors must not have heard the expert testimony that Thomas cut the hearts out of the lifeless bodies of three former family members under God’s direction; that he then stabbed himself three times in the chest before surrendering to the authorities; and that he plucked his own eye out in jail several days later as further appeasement to God.

Seven Machos said...

Interestingly enough, Robert Alter makes a very good case that an eye for any eye was merely a shorthand for the basic monetary compensation theory we have today in civil litigation.

Seven Machos said...

Does anyone ever notice that listening to God often leads to really bad circumstances?

Ann Althouse said...

Remember that Jesus advised eye-plucking. It's one of the least followed Biblical passages, from what I've seen (with my unplucked eyes).

save_the_rustbelt said...

A death row inmate in Ohio claimed he was allergic to the medicine used for lethal injections.

The late death row inmate was right, damn stuff killed him.

Ann Althouse said...

"Does anyone ever notice that listening to God often leads to really bad circumstances?"

That should be "listening for God." The problem is the delusion of those who then hear.

Class factotum said...

Whom do atheists listen to when they're crazy?

Rialby said...

Imagine that. A person commits a crime and then changes their condition so that humanity will pity the criminal and excuse the crime (at least to a degree). Wonder where a guy in Texas would get the idea that this tactic might work?

Oh right. From the millions of Mexicans who come here illegally, have kids and then tell YOU that it's inhumane to make them go home.

Scott said...

Finding religion didn't help Karla Faye Tucker. Nor should it have.

I've provoked some weird nastiness in past blog comment threads by asserting that Christians don't support the death penalty. (It's still my view, but I've got other things to do this afternoon that are more important than sparring with pseuds.) But having said that, I also think that if you truly are Christian and have had a conversion experience as the result of God's grace, then you should expect your reward in Heaven. It should have no bearing on your sentence. We don't live in a theocracy.

Pogo said...

Althouse, Jesus was misquoted.

He was speaking of eyebrow plucking; serious uni-brow problems in the Ancient Near East.


"Blessed are the thin of brow, for they shall see God.

SteveR said...

Having lived in the DFW area for a number of years, if the baseball Texas Rangers had this guy they would have trotted him out to the mound every five days to accumulate an astronomical ERA and paid him huge money to boot.

Joe said...

Does anyone ever notice that listening to God often leads to really bad circumstances?



Not always, actually technically NEVER, because if bad happens, by definition it wasn't God.

So the quesion is, is the voice you "hear" God's or someone else? What I have found is if the "voice" wants you to DO SOMETHING TO another person, it's not God. God wants us to do FOR, not TO....

God may ask you to give YOUR life, but He isn't very much on telling you TAKE ANOTHER'S life.

Scott said...

@Pogo: Then Leonid Brezhnev must be shoveling coals in hell.

Seven Machos said...

Joe -- So I suppose nobody died as a result of any of the plagues in Egypt. Right?

Lem said...

..if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out.

There is a big IF there professor.

I'm not ruling out the possibility that most peoples believe their eyes have not caused them to sin ;)

Gabriel Hanna said...

But having said that, I also think that if you truly are Christian and have had a conversion experience as the result of God's grace, then you should expect your reward in Heaven. It should have no bearing on your sentence. We don't live in a theocracy.

Remember that scene in "O Brother Where Art Thou" when Delmer gets saved? Everett tells him, "You may be square with the Lord, but the State of Mississippi is a little more hard-nosed."

Like many arguments against capital punishment, this argument is also an argument against prison. What good does it do to keep a blind man in prison? How much of a threat is he to society?

My position on capital punishment is that no executed felon has ever murdered anyone else. How many more men must a guilty murderer kill so we don't we risk executing one innocent man?

Trooper York said...

If Lawrence Taylor plucks out his balls maybe he can walk on this rape thingy.

SteveR said...

Oh BTW, I might could "pluck" your eyeballs out but pluck is too mild a word for doing that to myself, I'm thinking gouge, rip, claw, something like that.

Ann Althouse said...

@Lem In the modern world we know it's the brain. So if your brain causes you to sin...

Joe said...


Joe -- So I suppose nobody died as a result of any of the plagues in Egypt. Right?



Old Testament God is a bit tougher, I agree...however, look at the story of Jonah. Here Ywh ordered Jonah to Nineveh and Tyre to preach the Gsopel-as it were-in ORDER to prevent their destruction, by God, becasue of their sinfullness.

Here, even the Old Testament God, is ordering someone to do something, unpleasant and unwatned, in order to DO FOR, rahter than TO.

Scott said...

@Gabriel: You could make that an argument in favor of genocide, too. 6 million Jews didn't commit any crimes after the Holocaust either.

Alex said...

So if your brain causes you to sin...

That's why guns were invented.

Seven Machos said...

Joe -- I think the Bible is very best and richest literature ever anthologized. If you want to lead a good life and a vibrant intellectual life, you can do no better than to study it daily, which I do.

The problem with quoting from it is that it's such a broad anthology. So many of the authors bring such different views to the table.

Superdad said...

I would just like to point out that the fact that he pluck out his eyes is, in my mind, evidence of his continuing threat to society. There are several reasons for imposing any criminal sanction three of the most commonly discussed are:
1. public safety
2. retribution
3. deterrence

So the continuing threat question is directly related to #1

Joe said...

Well Seven, you're correct, but the New Testament is a lot nicer, no less dedicated....Jesus is one tough, committed, and very serious customer, as well, but it generally does follow a bit more on what God expects OF you, not what God expects you to DO To or FOR Him.

Lem said...

Tropper just reminded me of something..

Researchers say that the brain's frontal lobe controls things like social judgement, inhibition and so forth.

The theory goes that when Roethlisberger had that motorbike accident w/o a helmet... walla this is the result.

Maybe what Big Ben needs is a lobotomy ;)

Lem said...

Found it..

Ben Roethlisberger’s Behavior not his Fault?

Hoosier Daddy said...

Go look at the DOW and you too will want to pluck your eyes out.

Thanks Greece.

Slow Joe said...

Justice...

(takes glasses off)

is blind....

(puts glasses on)

YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHH

Trooper York said...

You know, Lem reminded me of something. Big Papi has been at Fenway Park too long. Dealing with those loser fans has freaked him out.

The theory is that if can get traded to another team his career won't continue to turn into this!

Slow Joe said...

Seven Machos is right, we should have a different burden for DP cases.

I'm not so sure free lawyers would be an improvement, since anyone who needs them already has them and there are many organizations that tend to do a good job helping DP defendants with appeals.

My change would be to increase the burden of proof from Reasonable Doubt to some standard that requires complete certainty.

Something like a confession or video proof that clearly IDs the killer, or DNA evidence that couldn't be left by a non-killer, or a situation that simply must prove we have the right man.

And I think this burden would dramatically reduce the number of death penalty sentences. This is the sentence we can't reverse, though. When it's truly proven, the appeals process should be shortened so that the impression that a Death Penalty is really a long prison sentence is avoided.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Scott:

You could make that an argument in favor of genocide, too. 6 million Jews didn't commit any crimes after the Holocaust either.

You beat the tar out of that straw man, all right. Oh, boy. How many of those six million had been convicted of murder?

Apples to apples, please.

Of course, if we killed everyone no one would commit any crimes! Yes, that must be what I meant!

Of course your "knock-down argument" applies equally to jail. Let's jail all six million Jews, then they won't commit crimes.

How about this: You get one murder, 20 - life depending on circumstances. Your second murder you get capital punishment. After two murders you've abundantly shown that you are a danger to others.

Night2night said...

Small aside on Christians and the death penalty. My understanding is the fifth commandment, "thou shall not kill" in popular parlance, is actually more accurately translated as "Thou shall not murder", with the implication one should not deprive someone of their life without some type of legal process (No prescription of what comprises due diligence is readily apparent in the New Testament other then Jesus’ observation in Mark 12:17, “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and unto God the things that are God's.” I assume this to mean the state is given rightful authority to do what it will, and we should obey in so far as the state’s dictates to not ask us to violate the edicts of God.).

Of course the challenge for the individual believer is not to feel driven to forgive others as a reflection of the original, undeserved, forgiveness extended to them. I also think explaining one's original actions with "God told me to do it." doesn't get you a pass here or anywhere else we might believe in. It is faith in the unproveable, but it is not of itself, insane.

Seven Machos said...

My change would be to increase the burden of proof from Reasonable Doubt to some standard that requires complete certainty.

I am so pleased to hear someone else make this argument. It would be so easy:

"The jury must find in a death penalty case that the evidence is so overwhelming that no person considering the evidence could come to any conclusion but guilty."

That's off the top of my head.

As for lawyers, you'd be surprised. I'm talking about $400 an hour attorneys -- the very, very best. Why not spend the money up front. Death penalty cases are very costly to the state, anyway, and we are talking about human life. Very precious, even this guy's.

Lem said...

you too Trooper!

Gabriel Hanna said...

"Murder" originally referred to SECRET killing.

The open killing of a man with armed relatives was a totally different story. It might be settled by a feud, or by weregild. Killing a tramp or a stranger in secret carried few consequences.

If you killed a slave, you had to pay for him. If you killed a free man, you had to pay his relatives.

This is where "an eye for an eye" comes from--to limit the scope of retribution. Before Moses it was "burn your tent down, kill your kids for an eye". Laws about weregild were not to say that you could buy the right to kill someone, but to limit the scope of retribution.

Methadras said...

Why is insanity an argument against the death penalty for capital murder cases? You would think it would be a precursor to assure it's use.

Methadras said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
edutcher said...

Ann Althouse said...

...

On March 30, 2004, at 5:00 p.m., jail psychologist Cactus Robin McGirk

Only Texas.

WV "dentappl" Fruit with attitude

Seven Machos said...

Meth -- That's easy. Law school 101. You have to do something wrong and have a bad mind about it. Mens rea is the fancy term.

If you are insane, you can't have a bad mind about your crime because true insanity means you don't know what you are doing in the first place.

Also, insanity is tough to demonstrate. Rest assured that most criminals don't win that argument.

Fred4Pres said...

How Greek is that!

AllenS said...

Michelangelo was famous for his poor personal hygiene. He followed his father's advice: "Never wash yourself," and often slept in his clothes and boots. Sometimes he went so long without taking them off that the skin came away like a snake's with the boots.

It's not like plucking your eyes out, but seriously, how wierd is that?

Fred4Pres said...

It is almost like the Saw movie franchise. Give an immate the choice of the death penalty or cutting off and/or gouging eyes and other appendages.

He probably is insane but the question is whether he is insane under the legal definition to avoid culpability.

Fred4Pres said...

Class factotum said...
Whom do atheists listen to when they're crazy?

5/6/10 1:12 PM


Hitchens? Dawkins?

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Slow Joe said: "This is the sentence we can't reverse, though."

You know, this argument always bothered me a bit. You can't really "reverse" incarcertation, either. You can let the person out, but you can't give them back the time they've served, the things they've missed, the family members they've lost, etc. Perhaps it should be "mitigate," and not reverse?
- Lyssa

lyssalovelyredhead said...

You know, I don't know why Althouse even bothers to give us current events stories. She ought to just say "Death Penalty! Discuss!," or "Abortion! Discuss!" because that's pretty much always winds up happening.

- Lyssa

Oligonicella said...

Seven Machos --

"Very precious, even this guy's."

Opinion only. Mine differs.

wv: aphipses - when aphids suddenly die.

John said...

A man blinds himself for the crime of killing members of his family and not one mention of Oedipus Rex. For shame Althouse commenters. Are you really a bunch of philistines?

Slow Joe said...

Lyssa, I see your point, but I will go ahead and stick to my view that death is not something you can fix. If someone spent ten years in prison, you can give him some money. It's not a perfect repair, but you can (at least the potential exists... I know some are not compensated) make some kind of repair.

Death is the end of the story in a special way, and pretending that people who were not killed are in that same both is pretty silly because of the point that we can't undo things perfectly in any mistake.

Yes, the death penalty is a special penalty that I think should require a very strict burden of proof beyond no reasonable doubt. While I can't prove an innocent has been executed, I know it's happened and can point to cases where I'm convinced it happened even if there's no true proof.

On the other hand, the death penalty is something I want to remain in some form.

Pogo said...

If only rapists would pluck out ol' one eye.

holdfast said...

I prefer the Tom Lehrer version:

rom the Bible to the popular song,
There's one theme that we find right along.
Of all ideals they hail as good,
The most sublime is Motherhood.

There was a man, oh, who it seems,
Once carried this ideal to extremes.
He loved his mother and she loved him,
And yet his story is rather grim.

There once lived a man named Oedipus Rex.
You may have heard about his odd complex.
His name appears in Freud's index
'Cause he loved his mother.

His rivals used to say quite a bit,
That as a monarch he was most unfit.
But still and all they had to admit
That he loved his mother.

Yes he loved his mother like no other.
His daughter was his sister and his son was his brother.
One thing on which you can depend is,
He sure knew who a boy's best friend is!

When he found what he had done,
He tore his eyes out one by one.
A tragic end to a loyal son
Who loved his mother.

So be sweet and kind to Mother,
Now and then have a chat.
Buy her candy or some flowers or a brand new hat.
But maybe you had better let it go at that!

Or you may find yourself with a quite complex complex,
And you may end up like Oedipus.
I'd rather marry a duck-billed platypus,
Than end up like old Oedipus Rex.
The out-patients are out in force tonight, I see.

Skyler said...

In an ancient religion in the Roman era, the highest levels of adherents to that religion would castrate themselves to attain some sort of priest hood. And they used a rock to do it, not a knife.

It almost makes plucking one's eyes out seem tame.

The point is that you need not be completely insane to self-mutilate, if you presume that religious beliefs are not entirely proof of insanity.

Seven, there are several theories about insanity in criminal law. Some say that if you don't know what is right and wrong, then you should not be punished (which is essentially the M'Naghten rule). Others say if you can't control your impulses, even if you know them to be wrong, is a sign of insanity (irresistible impulse).

Both those theories are flawed in my book. In either case, if the criminal can't control himself, or can't know right and wrong he is yet dangerous. And one of the best ways to teach him, albeit ex post facto, that his actions were wrong and should have been resisted, is to remove him from the ranks of the living, hopefully in a way such that he realizes that he is in fact dying.

Eric said...

Scott said...

@veni vidi vici: I just win the easy ones. :)


Most of life is just making sure you win the easy ones.

jgm said...

We had a guy in my neighborhood--crack addict, alky, thief, murderer (he had the teardrop tattooed under one eye), who after his release from prison suffered a massive stroke at about forty.

Was he harmless? Yes, personally. He could hardly walk, couldn't talk intelligibly and weighed about 90 pounds.

Unfortunately his (Section 8) apartment across the street became a haven for all the other scum around. He had booze, he had weed, he had crack; all, of course, supplied by a concerned and caring government (via his disability check). This guy (the punks called him "Pops") crippled as he was, single-handedly made this neighborhood a dangerous and nasty place for years.

Guess this is basically o/t, but the evil disabled thing reminded me of it.

WV: Spron. What criminals use to gouge their eyes out.

William said...

Isn't it a disservice to our handicapped community to claim that they are incapable of murder? I live in a state where a blind man is governor. If we presume that the handicapped can reach the same heights, can they also not reach the same depths? For shame that the ACLU is not protesting the breach of this man's civil rights.

Fred4Pres said...

John said...
A man blinds himself for the crime of killing members of his family and not one mention of Oedipus Rex. For shame Althouse commenters. Are you really a bunch of philistines?

5/6/10 3:18 PM


So when Drew W mentioned that "philistine" Sophocles and I mentioned Greeks, you did not catch on that we were referring to Oedipus Rex? Drew even put in a rhyme about it. John, sometimes it helps to scroll before you post.

Lem said...

Anybody following the returns from England?

Its on CSPAN.

MB said...

There is an old joke about a coroners inquest in Texas where an escaped felon was shot by a Texas Ranger.

The official cause was listed as suicide.

When questions how he could rule the death a suicide, the ME replied, Well, when a Texas Ranger tells you to stop, and you don’t - that’s suicide.”

Trooper York said...

It's not as much fun as the standings in the American League East. I mean Tampa is off the charts but the Yankees are right there.

themightypuck said...

Is this "argument" being made by the lawyer or the perp?

Franklin said...

I'm totally surprised at the direction this thread has taken. Clearly Ann intended it as a "what if a rapist castrated himself" thread, and she posted 6 times trying to steer it that way. Only one person took the bait.

C'mon people. Don't you hicks even know how to be motivated correctly?

Kirk Parker said...

"God may ask you to give YOUR life, but He isn't very much on telling you TAKE ANOTHER'S life."

Right, that's Allah's gig these days.

themightypuck said...

God said to Abraham "kill me a son..."

Largo said...

If what you watch on TV with your eyes off leads you to hell, better to pluck out your eyes and enter into heaven blind.

But you might throw your TV out first. Who knows, but that by this one act you might find yourself freed from that which had bound you, even to the extent of watching TV in the freedom you won.

The rich man was told my Jesus to give away his riches and to follow Him. This is what he needed to be perfect. Whether, once perfect, his riches would be heavenly only, or again earthly as well, we are not told.

Brilliant suggestion, the eye-plucking, since there are always so many things one can pluck first.

silverpie said...

Actually, there is a quote on due process in the Bible:

Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth?

John 7:51

Mitch H. said...

He blinded himself? What, does he think he's a dethroned Byzantine emperor? Is he angling for exile in Cherson?

A.G. said...

I hope they delay the decision so we can see what goofy-ass shit this guy will do to himself next. ;-/

Methadras said...

Seven Machos said...

Meth -- That's easy. Law school 101. You have to do something wrong and have a bad mind about it. Mens rea is the fancy term.


That's right. I was trying to remember the Latin for it. Thank you.

If you are insane, you can't have a bad mind about your crime because true insanity means you don't know what you are doing in the first place.

Personally, I think this is bullshit. Insanity is confined to that individual and their human mind. The notion that insanity is some sort of disassociated involuntary event that compels your to commit murder or any other heinous behavior is bullshit. I never bought insanity as a defense against murder and I still don't.

Also, insanity is tough to demonstrate. Rest assured that most criminals don't win that argument.

True.

Meems said...

None of you know Andre and you don't know the Thomas family. None of you sat through countless ER visits where he was turned away for treatment for lack of insurance despite the fact we all knew he believed God was talking to him, none of you saw the terror in him when he believed God wanted him to kill. Andre isn't Andre anymore, we were all losing him to schizophrenia long before he ever harmed anyone. If we could've afforded regular psych visits and about a grand in medications(sans insurance) then maybe that voice he thought was god would've gone away and he wouldn't have had those delusions. So say what you will about him not deserving life, but your on par with a paranoid schizophrenic who believed God told him to kill if you think you know who does and who doesn't have a right to live.