Death-row convicted killer, Gary Haugen. Had a small victory today in his battle for the right to see his sentence carried out. He was able to fire his lawyers who have been publicly questioning his mental competence in his desire to see his sentence meted out. How incompetent is someone who would rather be put to death and spend the ret of his life locked up in a cell by himself with an hour or so a day outside? As I have written before, Mr. Haugen was tried in the beating murder of his ex-girlfriend’s mother. He was competent then to stand trial, and competent enough to be sentenced to life without chance of parole… until he, along with another inmate, crushed a third inmate’s skull and stabbed him 84 time. Again, he was competent to stand trial for the crime and competent to be sentence to death. Ah, but Oregon’s death penalty is hardly ever enforced. What Mr. Haugen is demanding is not beyond the realm of comprehension. It makes sense. He is clearly competent to have his sentence carried out.
It is of no small consolation to see that Oregon is not alone in the hypocrisy of having the death penalty on the books but makes every effort not to enforce it.
John Edward Duncan III was convicted in Idaho of kidnapping, torture and murder. He was sentenced to death. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has seen fit to request a competency hearing, to see if Mr. Duncan is competent to represent himself. The AP reported on Tuesday that “Duncan has been found competent by every court that has considered the issue that his three death sentences remain in place.” U.S. Attorney Wendy Olsen was quoted as saying the hearing was simply a procedural matter.
Mr. Duncan was sentenced to die in 2008 for kidnapping, torture and murdering a 9 year-old Coeur d’Alene boy in 2005. Prosecutors said that Duncan “snatched Dylan Groene and his 8 year-old sister from their Idaho home after killing their older brother, mother and mother’s fiancé. Duncan kept the children at a Montana campsite for weeks before killing Dylan and returning with Dylan’s sister to Coeur d’Alene, where he was arrested.
Now, maybe I have mistaken the law according to fictitious San Francisco inspector Harry Callahan, but if a scumbag pervert like Mr. Duncan is not competent to being put to death—according to the law of the land for his crimes then the law is wrong… and there is no reason for the death penalty, at least in Idaho and Oregon.
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UPDATE: The Statesman Journal reported on Saturday, July 16. that the two attorneys that the judge agreed to remove from the Gary Haugen case have filed a petition asking the Oregon Supreme Court to rescind the order.
The attorneys had noted that they had "explained to the judge at Thursday's hearing that 'the court should make a decision based on the request of someone who has been determined to be delusional and incompetent by the only mental health professional to examine him following the issuance of the appellate judgement."
Hmmm. Does this sound like a delusional, incompetent individual?
"You have attorneys that have agendas that have so overpowered their ethical obligations and oaths that they're willing to sit there and just blatantly lie in the face of a presiding judge."