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Christina Shea Walters - North Carolina
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    Christina Shea Walters - North Carolina






    Summary of Offense:

    Defendant, Christina Shea Walters, was indicted on 4 January 1999 for two counts each of first-degree murder, first-degree kidnapping, and robbery with a dangerous weapon, as well as one count each of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree kidnapping, and conspiracy to commit robbery with a dangerous weapon. In a second multicount indictment issued 25 January 1999, defendant was also indicted for attempted first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, first-degree kidnapping, and robbery with a dangerous weapon.

    Defendant was tried capitally, and the jury found her guilty of all charges, specifically finding her guilty of both murders on the basis of premeditation and deliberation and under the felony murder rule. Following a capital sentencing proceeding, the jury recommended a sentence of death for each of the murders, and the trial court entered judgments accordingly. The trial court also sentenced defendant to consecutive terms of imprisonment for each of the nine other felony convictions.

    Victims: Tracy Rose Lambert and Susan Raye Moore

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    Administrator Michael's Avatar
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    July 5, 2000

    FAYETTEVILLE — An admitted gang member is headed to North Carolina's death row.

    A Cumberland County jury sentenced Christina Walters to death Thursday.

    Friday, Walters was convicted of randomly abducting and murdering Tracy Rose Lambert and Susan Raye Moore as part of an initiation into the Crips gang in August 1998.

    The jury also found Walters guilty of attempted murder for carjacking and shooting Deborah Cheeseborough several times, leaving her to die in the woods at Fort Bragg in August 1998.

    The district attorney has charged nine people in the crimes. Paco Tirado and Eric Queen were sentenced to death in April.

    Walters is the fifth woman now on North Carolina's death row.

    Source

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    Administrator Heidi's Avatar
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    Obviously many of you are viewing this thread due to the coverage on Deadly Women I must confess I am DVR'ing it!

    UPDATE Christina Walters' death sentence was affirmed May 02, 2003.

    STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA v. CHRISTINA SHEA WALTERS

    It is a 60-page opinion, but well worth the read.

    She was also denied relief in the United States Supreme Court in 2003

    Christina Shea Walters, Petitioner v. North Carolina

    That is where the trail runs dry. The state of North Carolina has a, so to speak, moratorium on executions. Walters is still at the state level in her appeals process.

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    Thanks for the link to the transcript of her trial. I think that the justice system has left the defendant room for appeal. I'll have to read the entire case, but if the victim she shot survived, why does she still get death instead of life without parole?

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    To answer your question death row inmates in every state are allotted a certain number of appeals..at least 8..on a good day. They get a direct appeal, then a death row inmate appeals to the US Supreme Court, then they appeal at the state level on post conviction relief. Once that appeal has exhausted they appeal on a federal district level. If that appeal is denied they appeal to the Federal District Court of Appeals that covers that state. Once denied there they have one more appeal before the United States Supreme Court.

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    Four death row inmates have their cases reviewed

    Four North Carolina death row inmates are scheduled to have their sentences reviewed under the revised Racial Justice Act in a hearing that may reveal the first fallout of the General Assembly's recent rollbacks to the law.

    Superior Court Judge Greg Weeks has scheduled a preliminary hearing Friday morning in Fayetteville. The four convicted murderers are trying to use the law that allows death row prisoners to use statistics to show that racial bias influenced their sentences.

    Tye Hunter, executive director of the Durham-based Center for Death Penalty Litigation, said the convicts want to have their sentences reduced to life in prison under the original 2009 Racial Justice Act, not the amended version passed by the General Assembly last month. Assistant Cumberland District Attorney Rob Thompson seeks to have Weeks recused, and declined to comment on the hearing.

    Weeks will examine the cases of Tilmon Golphin, a 34-year-old black man; Quintel Augustine, a 34-year-old black man; Christina Walters, a 33-year-old American Indian woman; and Jeffrey Meyer, a 45-year-old European man. All were convicted of first degree murder in Cumberland County.

    Golphin and his underage brother Kevin were convicted of gunning down two law officers in 1997 after their stolen car was pulled over on Interstate 95. Augustine was part of a group of four who taunted Fayetteville Police Officer Roy Turner Jr., and then shot him in the head and shoulder once he got out of his car. Walters, as part of a gang initiation, abducted and shot three teenage girls in 1998 - killing two of them. Meyer and an accomplice, who dressed in black ninja-garb and were allegedly inspired by the tabletop game "Dungeons and Dragons," killed an elderly couple in 1986 with a blowgun and knives.

    Their sentences have been in limbo during the past three years while lawmakers went back and forth on how to address race in the courtroom.

    Lawmakers this year rolled back the 2009 act. Governor Beverly Perdue vetoed the bill after a public outcry, but the Republican-led House overrode the veto.

    Nearly all of North Carolina's 150-plus death row inmates filed for reviews after the 2009 act passed. Proponents of the rollback said the recent amendments were needed to keep the state's courts from being bogged down. The amended law puts a time limit on applicable statistics and restricts data to the geographical area near where the crime was committed. The bill also said statistics alone cannot prove race was a factor- a restriction some say makes such proof nearly impossible.

    The freshly amended law makes it clear how to handle future death penalty cases, but what will happen to the approximately 150 inmates who appealed under the old law is unknown. The new law provides 60 days for inmates to revise their appeals to comply with the amendments, but it is not clear if the original appeals are still valid.

    "It definitely kind of murkies the water in that you've had a lot of change, and to some extent it's up in the air," said Hunter, who is helping represent the four convicts. "It is certainly going to cause a lot more litigation."

    The original appeals, Hunter said, will likely take years to move through state courts. He said they might be appealed all the way to the state Supreme Court and through federal courts as well. The four convicts up for review Friday are the beginning of that process, Hunter said.

    "It's not as straightforward as some people have assumed," Hunter said.

    It's no coincidence that the case is in Weeks' court. Hunter said the testing of the new law was chosen for Cumberland County because of Weeks' prior experience with the Racial Justice Act.

    In the first and only case under the 2009 Racial Justice Act, Weeks ruled that condemned killer Marcus Robinson's 1991 trial was racially influenced to the point where Robinson should be removed from death row.

    Robinson is a black man convicted of killing a white teenager in 1991 and was almost executed in 2007. Weeks said he found highly reliable a study by two Michigan State University law professors who analyzed the influence of race in the North Carolina judicial system. They found prosecutors eliminated black jurors more than twice as often as white jurors and that a defendant is nearly three times more likely to be sentenced to death if at least one of the victims is white.

    http://www2.nbc17.com/news/2012/jul/...ed-ar-2410408/
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    October hearings in NC Racial Justice Act cases

    Hearings have been scheduled to determine whether three people convicted of Fayetteville-area killings can be taken off North Carolina's death row under the Racial Justice Act.

    The Fayetteville Observer reports that Cumberland County Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Greg Weeks denied prosecutors' requests to delay the hearings, which are set to begin October 1.

    The inmates are seeking to have their death sentences lessened to life in prison under the Racial Justice Act, which allows appeals if racial bias during the trial is proved.

    They are Tilmon Golphin, a 34-year-old black man; Quintel Augustine, a 34-year-old black man; and Christina Walters, a 33-year-old American Indian woman.

    Earlier this year, Marcus Reymond Robinson of Fayetteville became the first prisoner to be removed from death row under the law.

    http://www.wwaytv3.com/2012/09/03/oc...tice-act-cases
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    Attorneys Give Opening Statements In Racial Justice Act Appeal For Death Row Inmates

    Defense attorneys say race was a significant factor in the death sentences given to two black men and one American Indian woman convicted of murder.

    The three are using the Racial Justice Act to try to get their death sentences reduced to life in prison. The act allows that reduction if it can be shown racial bias was a factor in a death sentence.

    Attorney James Ferguson said Monday in Cumberland County court that statistics, history, anecdotes and trial records will show bias. Prosecutor Rob Thompson argued that the jury selections had no racial bias and that a lead prosecutor from the time led anti-racism training in the Air Force.

    The inmates are Tilmon Golphin, Quintel Augustine and Christina Walters.

    http://www.witn.com/home/headlines/A...172179661.html
    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

    "Y'all be makin shit up" ~ Markeith Loyd

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    Retired prosecutor Margaret Buntie Russ denies race was factor in jury selection for gang initiation murder trial

    Retired Cumberland County prosecutor Margaret Buntie Russ testified Monday that the race of potential jurors in Fayetteville's infamous gang initiation murder case did not influence her decisions to strike them from the trial.

    But on cross-examination from a defense lawyer, she was forced to discuss why a judge 14 years ago ruled that she tried to dismiss a juror because he was black. She also was questioned about a case that was overturned on appeal on the contention that she misled a jury.

    Russ was testifying at a Racial Justice Act hearing in which three death row inmates are trying to persuade a judge to convert their sentences to life without parole, based on the premise that they were sentenced to death because of racism in the criminal justice system.

    The inmates are Christina Walters, Tilmon Golphin and Quintel Augustine. The hearing started last week and is expected to run several more days.

    Walters led a gang that kidnapped and shot three women in 1998, killing two of them, in a gang-initiation rite. She contends that jurors were blocked by prosecutors Russ and Charles Scott because they were black, and this could have led to her receiving the death penalty for the murders.

    Walters is of Lumbee and Cherokee descent. The murder victims in her case were white. The surviving victim, who had been left for dead after Walters shot her eight times, is black.

    Under questioning from prosecutor Mike Silver, who is trying to keep Walters on death row, Russ outlined why she struck 10 black jurors from Walters' trial.

    Their race had nothing to do with it, Russ said.

    "It was no factor, sir," she said.

    One juror had been the victim of a car break-in, yet did not see himself as a victim. Russ said she questioned whether he could relate to the murder victims.

    Another juror was a grandfather whose two grandchildren had been killed. The killer got 75 years, Russ said, and the juror thought that was too light a sentence. Russ thought he might be biased against the state, because of that, at Walters' trial.

    Another juror troubled Russ because when she answered Russ' questions, "she would pause. She was unsure of her answers. She seemed confused."

    Some of the other issues that Russ reported: A juror who did not seem to understand the law, a juror who was friendly with gang members and a juror who had been a student in a class that Russ had taught. Russ couldn't remember if she gave the student a bad grade, so she excused her in case she had any lingering animosity.

    Walters' lawyer Tye Hunter questioned Russ intensely about her practices as a prosecutor and about her credibility.

    He brought out that in 1996, the N.C. Court of Appeals overturned her conviction in 1994 of a man accused of molesting a 6-year-old girl. "We conclude that the prosecutor's argument was 'calculated to mislead or prejudice the jury,' " the ruling says.

    At a capital murder trial in 1998 of former state Highway Patrol Trooper Maurice Parker, Hunter had Russ discuss why she lost a Batson challenge on a black juror.

    The term "Batson challenge" refers to a 1986 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that said potential jurors may not be dismissed from serving on trial because of their race. Based on that ruling, when a lawyer thinks the other side is using a peremptory challenge against a juror because of his race, he can ask the judge to demand a race-neutral explanation for the juror strike.

    In the Parker trial, Russ had to explain why she and Scott wanted to excuse the black juror.

    According to the transcript, Russ said it was based on the juror's age, his attitude, body language and that he seemed evasive.

    Those four reasons are part of a larger list of reasons that, according to a prosecutor training document, a prosecutor can offer as an explanation when faced with a Batson challenge, according to Hunter's presentation.

    Even though the judge at Parker's trial decided that Russ violated the Batson rule, Russ said she still believes that she and Scott made the right choice when they tried to excuse the juror. "We firmly believed the things we saw constituted a reason for us to form this challenge," she said.

    The juror in question was seated and found Parker guilty. The jury deadlocked 6-6 on whether to sentence Parker to death, so he got life in prison instead.

    Russ is to be back on the stand for more cross-examination at 9:30 a.m. today in Room 4A of the Cumberland County Courthouse.

    http://www.fayobserver.com/articles/...0?sac=fo.local
    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

    "Y'all be makin shit up" ~ Markeith Loyd

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    NC judge to rule on racial bias from old trials

    A North Carolina judge is expected to rule on petitions from three death-row inmates who allege racial bias played a role in their sentences.

    Cumberland County Superior Court Judge Greg Weeks is scheduled to announce Thursday whether he will commute the sentences of the three convicted murderers under the state's Racial Justice Act from death to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

    Lawyers for Christina "Queen" Walters, Tilmon Golphin and Quintel Augustine argued at a hearing in October that statistics and handwritten notes from prosecutors show racial bias in jury selection.

    Earlier this year, an inmate became the first to have his sentence commuted to life without parole under the provisions of the 2009 law, which Republicans in the state legislature have sought to repeal since its approval.

    http://abclocal.go.com/wtvd/story?se...cal&id=8918667
    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

    "Y'all be makin shit up" ~ Markeith Loyd

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