News Update 04.04.08
Media coverage of Glen Chapman’s release from death row via the News & Observer, the New York Times, the Charlotte Observer, WRAL, the Hickory Daily Record, NBC-17, and WSOC-TV. Chapman was released two days ago after serving nearly 14 years for two murders he did not commit – one of which may not have been a murder at all.
In the picture above, (source) Chapman savors his first meal as a free man. He requested a bologna and cheese sandwich, like his mother used to make. You can hear Chapman speak at the press conference that followed his release by clicking on the Video tab here. I highly recommend it.
Dennis Rhoney, the detective whose testimony put Chapman on death row for the murders of Betty Jean Ramseur and Tenene Yvette Conley, has been suspended from his job as a Sheriff’s deputy, pending a perjury investigation.
Mark Bowling, who stands accused of arranging for his girlfriend to murder his wife in 2006, has had the venue of his trial changed from Nash to Pitt County. Citing over 100 local newspaper articles about the crime, and a survey of local residents that showed 90% of prospective jurors were aware of the case – 44% of whom had already decided that Bowling was guilty – Bowling’s attorneys argued that it would be impossible for him to receive a fair trial in his home jurisdiction.
Virginia governor Tim Kaine has stayed the scheduled execution of Edward Bell. Kaine acknowledged “the national legal consensus that no execution can go forward until [Baze v. Rees is decided].” He added that, “Stays in the final hours before an execution can take an emotional and physical toll on those who must prepare for the execution, including the family members of the victim or victims.” Bell’s execution has been stayed until at least July 24th.