Alabama column: Why no DNA testing for Tommy Arthur?
Posted: July 11, 2008 4:10 pm
"It seems a simple thing. Before the state of Alabama executes someone, it should leave no room for doubt about a person's guilt," columnist David Person writes in today’s Huntsville Times.
Tommy Arthur has been on Alabama’s death row for 25 years for a murder he has always said he didn’t commit. Gov. Bob Riley has the right to order a DNA test on his behalf. George W. Bush ordered testing for a prisoner when he was governor of Texas. But Riley has refused to grant access to testing, and Arthur is scheduled to be executed on July 31st.
Alabama is one of seven states that doesn't provide access to DNA testing for capital cases. What's shameful about this is that DNA testing not only can exonerated the wrongly convicted, it can help identify the true perpetrators.
How many people walk our streets with blood on their hands, rapists or murderers who should be locked up for life, only because we've refused to use DNA testing?
If I were governor, I wouldn't want to live with that. Neither, I'd like to think, would Riley.
Read the full column here. (Huntsville Times, 07/11/08)