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Charles Lee Burton, Jr. - Alabama Death Row
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Thread: Charles Lee Burton, Jr. - Alabama Death Row

  1. #1
    Administrator Michael's Avatar
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    Charles Lee Burton, Jr. - Alabama Death Row




    Summary of Offense:

    Convicted in the same crime, the August 1991 robbery of an auto parts store and murder of Doug Battle, as Derrick Anthony DeBruce (also sentenced to death). DeBruce pulled the trigger, but the robbery was Burton's idea.

    Burton was sentenced to death in May 1992.

    For more on DeBruce, see: http://www.cncpunishment.com/forums/...hlight=debruce

  2. #2
    Administrator Moh's Avatar
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    On February 8, 2005, Burton filed a habeas petition in Federal District Court.

    http://dockets.justia.com/docket/ala...v00308/106872/

  3. #3
    Senior Member CnCP Legend JLR's Avatar
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    Oral arguments are scheduled for the 13th of September in the Eleventh Circuit.

    http://www.ca11.uscourts.gov/calenda...rton_DPCAL.pdf

  4. #4
    Administrator Heidi's Avatar
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    CHARLES L. BURTON, JR. versus COMMISSIONER, ALABAMA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

    In today's opinions, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals AFFIRMED the district court's DENIAL of Burton's petition for a writ of habeas corpus filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 2254.
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  5. #5
    Administrator Moh's Avatar
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    On February 8, 2013, the US Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals denied Burton's petition for rehearing en banc.

    http://www.supremecourt.gov/Search.a...es/13-5214.htm

  6. #6
    Administrator Moh's Avatar
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    In today's United States Supreme Court orders, Burton's petition for a writ of certiorari was DENIED.

    Lower Ct: United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
    Case Nos.: (10-12108)
    Decision Date: November 7, 2012
    Rehearing Denied: February 8, 2013

    http://www.supremecourt.gov/Search.a...es/13-5214.htm

  7. #7
    Senior Member CnCP Legend Mike's Avatar
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    Alabama death row inmates elect alternate method of execution, drop lethal injection suit

    By Ivana Hrynkiw
    AL.com

    The attorney for several Alabama death row inmates and the Alabama Attorney General's Office have asked a judge to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the state's lethal injection method because the inmates want to be executed a different way.

    Court records show John Palombi, a federal public defender for the Middle District of Alabama, and Deputy AG Thomas Govan filed a motion to dismiss the case on Tuesday because the inmates named in the lawsuit have elected a new form of execution, which was made legal last month. Because they've now opted to die by nitrogen hypoxia instead of lethal injection, their claims in the lawsuit are moot.

    The case was originally filed in 2012 by multiple death row inmates, including several who have been executed since that time. The case focused on what the inmates said were challenges to the constitutionality of Alabama's current three-drug method of execution, which includes the sedative midazolam.

    According to the joint motion, Gov. Kay Ivey signed into state law on March 22 a bill that approved nitrogen hypoxia as a method of execution. Under the amended law, lethal injection will remain the primary method of capital punishment, but inmates sentenced to die will be provided an opportunity to choose nitrogen hypoxia instead.

    Inmates who were already on death row had the option to pick the nitrogen method and notify the Department of Corrections of their choice by June 30.

    The motion shows each surviving plaintiff in the suit-- Carey Dale Grayson, Demetrius Frazier, David Lee Roberts, Robin Dion Myers, Gregory Hunt, Geoffrey Todd West, Charles Lee Burton, and David Wilson-- chose the method of nitrogen hypoxia and alerted the DOC last month.

    The Federal Defender's office released a statement Tuesday afternoon: "These plaintiffs pled nitrogen hypoxia as an alternative method of execution, and the state's adoption of nitrogen hypoxia as an authorized method rendered the suit moot. The plaintiffs in this case, and anyone else who elected the new method, cannot now be executed by lethal injection...While the best way to reduce the risks of botched executions would be to abolish the death penalty, if the death penalty does exist, it must be carried out in a constitutional manner with the respect and dignity that is required of such a solemn event. We urge the Department [of Corrections] to make any new execution protocol public, as virtually all other death penalty states do, so that the people of the state of Alabama know what is being done in their name."

    The office also said the inmates in the lawsuit have not waived the right to challenge the details of nitrogen hypoxia in the future, and they should be able to do so "to ensure that Alabama carries out this method in a humane manner."

    The AG's office has not returned AL.com's request for comment.

    https://www.al.com/news/birmingham/i...ates_elec.html

  8. #8
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    In today's orders, the United States Supreme Court declined to review Burton's petition for certiorari.

    Lower Ct: Court of Criminal Appeals of Alabama
    Case Numbers: (CR-16-0812)
    Decision Date: February 2, 2018
    Discretionary Court Decision Date: April 20, 2018

    https://www.supremecourt.gov/search....c/18-5937.html

  9. #9
    Senior Member CnCP Legend Mike's Avatar
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    Alabama death row inmate hopes courts will allow chaplain by his side at execution

    By Jackson Stephens
    Religion News Service

    Charles L. Burton Jr. doesn’t want to be alone when he dies.

    The death row inmate hopes a federal court will make sure that does not happen.

    Burton, who was sentenced in 1992 for participation in a murder during a robbery, filed suit last year after the state of Alabama denied a Muslim inmate from having an imam serve as a spiritual adviser at his execution, citing state policy that only allowed Christian clergy to serve as chaplains in the death chamber.

    In response, the state barred all spiritual advisers, a move criticized by Spencer Hahn, one of Burton’s lawyers.

    “They’re wrong legally, they’re wrong constitutionally. Morally they’re wrong,” Hahn said.

    Burton’s lawsuit is expected to be heard in court in 2021.

    The state’s rationale is that inmates now receive equal treatment because no one can be accompanied by a spiritual adviser in the death chamber. Prison officials did not return official requests or emails seeking elaboration. Lawyers and civil rights advocates object to the ban, arguing it hurts more inmates and fails to resolve Burton’s complaint.

    Burton’s execution is currently on hold. He is one of about 50 inmates who chose to be executed by inhaling nitrogen gas, a method the state introduced in 2018 as an alternative to lethal injection. State officials have not worked out how to implement the nitrogen gas method of execution.

    The preemptive move by Alabama to remove all spiritual advisers from the death chamber drew criticism from civil liberties’ advocates and Christian chaplains in a state known for its deeply Christian population. Alabama appears to be following a strategy set by the Texas prison system, which ordered a similar ban in response to a Buddhist inmate’s request.

    Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court halted the execution of Ruben Gutierrez, a Catholic inmate in Texas who was not allowed to have a chaplain in the death chamber with him. Gutierrez’s attorneys argued this violated his free exercise of religion.

    The status of chaplains in the Alabama prison system varies. There are some Christian chaplains who are employees of the system. There are also other faith leaders, often imams, rabbis and religious leaders of non-Christian faiths, who are registered as volunteer spiritual advisers and can visit death row inmates and watch executions from a viewing room but cannot be in the chamber when prisoners die.

    Under the new policy, Christian chaplains are also forbidden from accompanying an inmate in the death chamber.

    “They don’t hire anyone who isn’t Christian,” said Ali Massoud, the government affairs coordinator for the Council on American-Islamic Relations Alabama. “That means that no other religious minorities on death row will have access to a spiritual adviser that they need.”

    Burton, a practicing Muslim of 30 years, challenged the policy in a lawsuit filed last year in the Middle District Court of Alabama against Jefferson Dunn, the commissioner for the Department of Corrections. Burton’s lawyers argue that inmates are granted robust religious freedom protections.

    They cite two laws in their court filings: the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act and the Alabama Religious Freedom Amendment.

    Hahn cited these laws in the past as an attorney representing Domineque Hakim Ray, who was denied an imam by his side during his execution in February 2019. The case was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, which found that Ray missed the deadline to file his request.

    In response to the complaint by Burton on May 29, 2019, Dunn instituted a policy that no chaplain, Christian or otherwise, will be allowed in the execution chamber. Dunn also requested that Burton’s complaint be dismissed.

    District Judge Emily C. Marks on Nov. 19 refused to dismiss Burton’s request, and a trial on the issue will likely be held no sooner than May 2021.

    The Rev. Alan Cross, a Baptist pastor who opposes chaplain bans against any faith, believes this new policy puts Christian souls in jeopardy.

    “The reason why Christians in Alabama should care about this is because it is about more than just the punishment of the man,” said Cross. “We should care about his eternal destiny. We should care about a soul.”

    Cross said Christian theology teaches that inmates facing execution can ask for mercy and forgiveness, and God will hear their prayer until their very last breath. A chaplain can help spiritually guide them through this profound moment.

    “If we are going to execute people, then we should at least offer them the benefit of their faith to have a pastor or imam to be with them to contemplate these eternal things at the very end,” said Cross.

    Until a court rules on Burton’s case, the ban on chaplains in the death chamber remains in place. And in at least one case, an imam was unable to attend an execution as a witness.

    On March 5, 2020, Imam Yusef Maisonet was told by Holman prison officials to wait at a hotel and expect to be called to the execution viewing room. Maisonet was a spiritual adviser to Nathaniel Woods, whose execution was set for that night.

    Maisonet said he never got the call from prison employees and left to return home after correctly assuming Woods was granted a stay of execution.

    After the stay by the U.S. Supreme Court was lifted, Woods was executed by lethal injection without an attempt by prison authorities to bring back Maisonet.

    Wood’s lawyer Lauren Faraino said this shows a lack of concern for religious freedom.

    “They’ve made a mockery of the constitutional rights to religious freedom, freedom from discrimination, and yet they don’t have to claim responsibility because they can say well, Imam Yusef chose to leave,” Faraino said.

    https://religionnews.com/2020/06/30/...-at-execution/
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  10. #10
    Administrator Aaron's Avatar
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    Firstly, Burton chose nitrogen and won't be executed for the foreseeable future, if ever, so this hardly matters for him himself.

    Secondly, while I don't understand why Maisonet couldn't simply wait with the other witnesses, it's his fault that he left over a temporary stay.
    "You can't get rich in politics unless you're a crook." - Harry Truman

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