Law and Order
INSTRUCTION NO. 12:
Premeditation need not be for a day, an hour or even a minute. It may be as instantaneous as successive thoughts of the mind. For if the jury believes from the evidence that the act constituting the killing has been preceded by and has been the result of premeditation, no matter how rapidly the premeditation is followed by the act constituting the killing, it is willful, deliberate and premeditated murder.
INSTRUCTION NO. 20:
Murder of the Second Degree is murder with malice aforethought, but without the admixture of premeditation. All murder which is not Murder of the First Degree is Murder of the Second Degree.
Tom Brennan. He was the lawyer for Edward Wilson, who was facing the death penalty, along with three other boys. Yeah, Edward got it. You betcha Edward got it.
Well, Lawyer Brennan was supposed to argue on behalf of Edward, make sure he didn’t get the death penalty. Brennan didn’t put on any witnesses for Edward, but he did make an argument to the judges.
He told them that Edward “was in effect a Judas Goat…who lured the victim, James Hoff to the scene of his death…I believe this,” he said, “[T]hese other boys were influenced and coerced and under the dominion and control of my client, [Edward]…” who “was yelling for his friends to stab Jim Hoff.”
THE COURT: And what is the extent of your formal education?
PROSPECTIVE JUROR: I finished pharmacist school in Poland. In here I didn’t any kind of education.
THE COURT: So you went to something that resembles a high school in Poland, right?
PROSPECTIVE JUROR: It’s a medical college, it’s a medical academy with major pharmacy; five years study after high school.
THE COURT: So you went to high school?
PROSPECTIVE JUROR: Yes.
Tuesday morning, I didn’t have anything to do. I could sure use $100, being out of work and all -- 24, West Coast Southside Latino low riding on another sunny day in Sacramento.
I went over to his house that morning and met an older man who said he had everything covered. I was to drive him to Idaho where he was going to meet his cousin and we would stay a few days and then come back.
“Am I free to leave?” the old man asked the NHP officer. I watched as he left the car and me and walked up over the hill. I never saw him again. “Mind if we search the car, young man? You don’t have anything to hide, do you?”
Race is cultural. Race is political. Race is not biological. It is not a genetic component. Race is not a genetic component of the human race.
I met the Wilson family, including Edward Wilson [and] … I wanted to help them…I developed a special relationship with the family and continued to visit them, buy certain family members gifts and take certain family members on trips, including overnight trips, for the next two years. I had occasion to make numerous trips with Edward….During these trips I had sexual contact with David, Gerald, and Edward. …This contact involved sleeping in the same bed with them and fondling them. This occurred most frequently and for the longest duration with Edward.…I was drawn to Edward because he was the oldest boy, he was very attractive and he seemed to need the most help.
I did not think my contact with Edward or his brothers was bad or harmful. I did not feel that I forced myself upon them, but was rather educating them or letting them explore their own sexuality….
The primary reason why I do not have sexual contact with underage boys [since leaving the priesthood] is that I am afraid of the legal ramifications, not because I believe it is harmful or bad….
I declare under penalty of perjury that the forgoing is true and correct.
Signed: John F. Watts
I got mad. She paid no attention to me. She ignored me. I got two razor blades and put them in an envelope. I wrote a short note and mailed it all to her. The police arrested me and I got prison.
One year later. I was on parole. I was not mad. I was going to federal court to see my probation officer and had my new walking cane. It had an 11” rapier inside it. The X ray machine saw it. I got prison (again).
MILLS B. LANE, District Attorney within and for the County of Washoe, state of Nevada, in the name and by the authority of the State of Nevada, informs the above entitled Court that Mark John Kesner has committed the crimes of: Count One, causing the death of another by driving a vehicle while intoxicated, a violation of NRS 484.3795; Count Two, causing the death of another by driving while having 0.10 percent or more by weight of alcohol in the blood, a violation of NRS 484.3795; Count Three, leaving the scene of an accident involving the death of a human being; all felonies.
THE DEFENDANT: I wish to represent myself, your Honor.
THE COURT: How old are you?
THE DEFENDANT: 20, your Honor.
THE COURT: And what is the extent of your formal education?
THE DEFENDANT: I have a GED, your Honor.
THE COURT: Do you have any history that might be affecting you as to your mental health?
THE DEFENDANT: I have a history, but it doesn’t affect me, your Honor.
“Laura, how many documents did we get from the state of Washington after we served those subpoenas?”
“4000 pages worth. I reviewed them preliminarily and here’s what I found. Washington State took him from his mother for the first time when he was three months old and it put him into a psychiatric hospital for the first time at age nine. Nine years old! His entire childhood was spent in abusive foster care homes, juvenile detention, group homes, or psychiatric hospitals!
He may have had a GED but he also had a mental health disease, fetal alcohol syndrome, and neurodevelopmental deficits, including organic brain damage, for which he was prescribed numerous medications like potent antipsychotic medication.
Who was your mother? Did she tuck you into bed at night with a story and a kiss? Was she always there for you? Black Tar was her constant companion, -- in and out, in and out of her collapsed veins, -- loving her like no other. It kissed her arms, her inner thighs, her feet.
You know, premeditation is the act of planning -- a design, a determination to kill. You can form that design in Nevada in the blink of an eye. You just gotta kill somebody and the prosecution has to prove it wasn't accidental. All you need to do is shoot and you too can be on death row in Nevada. So, pull that trigger.
Let not your heart be troubled, His tender word I hear,
And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears;
Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
"His Eye is on the Sparrow" 1905; Civilla D. Martin and Charles H. Gabriel.