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  1. #1
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    Angola 5/Robert G. Carley Sentenced to Life in 1999 LA Slaying of Prison Guard David C. Knapps



    A prosecutor told a jury that Angola inmate Robert G. Carley was a leader in an escape plot that led to the death of prison security Capt. David C. Knapps nearly 12 years ago.

    Tommy Block, lead prosecutor in the so-called Angola 5 murder trials, said Carley participated in the stabbing and beating death of Knapps inside the Education Building at Angola's Camp D when the escape plan began to fall apart on the night of Dec. 28, 1999.

    The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/quJsvw ) attorneys in the case chose the jury of five men and seven women from St. Tammany Parish on Tuesday morning, and the panel was taken to St. Francisville for the trial.

    The state is seeking the death penalty against Carley.

    http://www.chron.com/news/article/Te...se-2158628.php

  2. #2
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    Angola guard testifies in murder trial

    A corrections officer taken hostage during an attempted escape testified Wednesday that Angola inmate Robert G. Carley had blood on his hands when he held a crude knife to her throat to force her to relay the hostage-takers’ demands to prison officials.

    Sgt. Reddia Walker was the first witness called in the first-degree murder trial of Carley in the Dec. 28, 1999, slaying of Louisiana State Penitentiary security Capt. David C. Knapps, 49.

    Carley, 43, and four other inmates were indicted in the case. One of them, Jeffrey Cameron Clark, 50, was convicted of first-degree murder of Knapps and sentenced to death in May.

    Some of the jurors reacted audibly Wednesday when prosecutor Lea Hall, of Caddo Parish, showed them a photograph of Knapps’ bloody, battered face during testimony by retired corrections officer Darren Bordelon, who was a lieutenant colonel at Angola’s Camp D where Knapps was slain during an escape attempt.

    Bordelon said he had been a friend of Knapps for about 20 years but couldn’t recognize Knapps’ battered face as his body lay on the floor of a restroom in the camp’s Education Building, which inmates held for several hours.

    “The top of his head was mashed in,” Bordelon said.

    Walker, who now works at Dixon Correctional Institute, said she was pushed into the building when she went to the door to see why some inmates were running out of the door.

    After she was taken hostage, Carley tied Walker’s shoelaces together and told her to put her hands behind her back as she lay on the floor.

    “This is like St. Martinville,” Walker said Carley told her, referring to a takeover of a St. Martinville jail earlier that month by detainees held by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service.

    Walker said she realized that her hands were not tied, however, and she set off a “beeper” to alert the prison’s control center that she needed help.

    She testified Carley said “all hell has broken loose” because he could hear officers being alerted over the prison radio network.

    Walker said Carley used a radio to call the control center as if he were Knapps and report, “D-4 beeper under control.”

    After Carley took her with a knife to her throat to an inmate property storage room, Walker testified, she talked briefly with officers outside of the building to report that she had not been harmed but was unaware of the condition of two other officers in the building.

    Angola’s tactical team eventually stormed the building after Warden Burl Cain got the inmates to unlock an exterior door to accept a note assuring them no harm would come to them if they surrendered without harming the hostages.

    Cain testified the idea of passing the note was the only way possible to get them to open the door. Inmates Joel Durham and David Mathis held Walker in the storage room as the officers rushed inside. Both were shot, but Mathis survived and also faces trial.

    Prosecutor Hugo Holland, also of Caddo Parish, had State Police Crime Laboratory scientist Pat Lane lay the groundwork for expected testimony by DNA experts, investigators, a crime scene reconstruction expert, a pathologist and other state witnesses.

    Lane identified numerous articles of clothing collected from Carley and from Knapps’ body, prison-made weapons and other evidence. He also narrated a video taken of the building’s interior, including the blood-spattered restroom where he said Knapps was slain.

    “This was literally a fight to the death,” with blood splattered “from one end of the room to the other over a period of time,” Lane said of the restroom.

    http://theadvocate.com/home/788646-7...in-murder.html

  3. #3
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    2nd 'Angola 5' member convicted of killing guard

    A jury chosen in St. Tammany Parish has convicted a second Louisiana State Penitentiary inmate of first-degree murder in the stabbing and beating death of a prison guard in 1999.

    Retired Orleans Parish Judge Jerome M. Winsberg said the jurors would hear testimony Sunday about whether Robert G. Carley should be sentenced to life in prison or death by injection.

    The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/mQIEMV) that jurors deliberated less than two hours Saturday night before convicting Carley of murdering 49-year-old Capt. David C. Knapps.

    Prosecutors say Knapps was killed when Carley and five other inmates tried to escape. One was killed when authorities rescued two other guards being held as hostages. Inmate Jeffrey Clark was convicted and sentenced to death in May.

    The case is being heard in West Feliciana Parish.

    http://www.chron.com/news/article/2n...rd-2165572.php

  4. #4
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    Jury deliberations delayed for Angola 5 defendant

    The jury that unanimously convicted Angola inmate Robert G. Carley of first-degree murder in the 1999 death of a prison security officer began deliberations Sunday night to decide whether Carley should be put to death by lethal injection or given a life sentence for the crime.

    The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/q4gfH6 ) the jury had deliberated for an hour and 20 minutes when the presiding judge told attorneys that a juror was in diabetic distress and needed insulin.

    The judge said paramedics had been called to treat the juror, and he ordered the jurors to stop deliberating until the ailing juror returned.

    Carley was convicted Saturday night in the beating and stabbing death of Capt. David C. Knapps during an escape attempt from the Camp D Education Building at Louisiana State Penitentiary.

    http://www.chron.com/news/article/Ju...nt-2166195.php

  5. #5
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    Carley to get life sentence

    The jury that unanimously convicted Angola inmate Robert G. Carley of first-degree murder in the 1999 death of a prison security officer could not reach a unanimous decision Sunday on whether Carley should get the death penalty or another life sentence.

    As a result, Carley will receive an automatic life sentence in the case, presiding Judge Jerome M. Winsberg said.

    The jurors deliberated about two hours before returning to the courtroom to report they could not reach a unanimous verdict against Carley, 43.

    Winsberg asked them at 10 p.m. to deliberate some more, but jurors returned later to say they were “hopelessly deadlocked.”

    http://theadvocate.com/news/819561-6...leys-fate.html

  6. #6
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    Yates jail escapee evades death penalty for Louisiana slaying

    Robert G. Carley is a name Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike remembers well from his case files. Carley is the only escapee in the history of the Yates County Public Safety Building. That was 26 years ago, when Spike was chief deputy under Sheriff Jan Schofield.

    Today, Spike knows Carley for another escape from another facility, and the vicious murder he committed in the attempt — one for which he evaded a death sentence due to a deadlocked Louisiana jury.

    In 1985, Carley was a 17-year-old juvenile delinquent from Penfield when he was arrested in Yates County for stealing a brand new Honda Civic during a burglary in Rochester. Picked up after wrecking it near the Viking Motel, that was just his latest crime in what could only be described as an already extensive criminal record for one so young. But he was just beginning his career as a hardened criminal.

    Less than two weeks after that Aug. 25 arrest, Carley was in the Yates County jail’s recreation yard when his eye caught sight of a small area of deterioration in the high, razor wire-topped chain link fence where it met the pavement. Working quickly, he managed to unweave enough of the fence fabric to wriggle his small frame underneath. According to Spike, once he was past the first perimeter, Carley scaled the plain secondary fence “as if it wasn’t even there.”

    The escapee didn’t make it far. He was found the next day riding a stolen bicycle near Gorham, and was run down on foot by deputies Reynolds and Simpson. Returned to the jail (but not the yard) until his trial in November 1985, Carley was convicted by Judge Fred Dugan of first-degree escape and criminal possession of stolen property, and sentenced to two to four years in state prison in Elmira.

    That was the last Yates County was to hear of Robert G. Carley for 25 years, and in that same quarter-century, after a complete rebuilding of the recreation yard, that was the last and only escape from the county jail.

    By 1999, the 31-year-old Carley had become a career criminal incarcerated in Louisiana’s infamous Angola prison. Perhaps remembering his success in his single-handed escape from Yates County, Carley joined a conspiracy of five to plan another outbreak. This one would involve much more than unraveling some wire fence and stealing a bike; this one would mean taking a man’s life.

    Carley was serving a life sentence for the Oct. 15, 1987, murder of gas station attendant Robert Esposito during an armed robbery in St. Bernard Parish. On Dec. 28, 1999, Carley was the leader in an escape plot that led to the death of prison security Capt. David C. Knapps, 49, a 12-year veteran held hostage during the uprising. Using a makeshift knife and a claw hammer, Carley participated in the stabbing and beating death of Knapps inside the Education Building at Angola’s Camp D when the escape plan began to fall apart, said Tommy Block, lead prosecutor in the so-called Angola 5 murder trials.

    “The blood found on Robert Carley binds him to those final moments of Capt. David Knapps’ life,” Block said during opening statements in Carley’s first-degree murder trial.

    The jury that convicted Carley on Sept. 10 of the first-degree murder of Capt. Knapps began deliberations last Sunday night in St. Francisville, La., on whether to sentence the now 43-year-old to yet another life sentence or to death by lethal injection. The jury could not reach a unanimous decision; as a result, Carley will receive a life sentence in the case, said presiding judge Jerome M. Winsberg. According to Winsberg, the jury said they were “hopelessly deadlocked.”

    Spike had been contacted by the Jefferson Parish District Attorney’s Office for the information on Carley’s first jailbreak, to use in their arguments for the death penalty. The sheriff was also contacted by an anti-death penalty defense organization.

    “He was kind of an antisocial guy,” Spike recalled with understatement.

    http://www.penfieldpost.com/latestne...isiana-slaying

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