Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

December 13, 2005

Max Sawicky, Marc Cooper and the late Tookie Williams

Filed under: Uncategorized — louisproyect @ 3:27 pm

Posted to www.marxmail.org on December 13, 2005

Two leftists associated with Pajamas Media have chimed in on Tookie Williams’s execution. They are Max Sawicky and Marc Cooper, who might be described as “dumber and dumber.”

On his blog, Cooper explains how Schwarzenegger’s hands were tied:

“William’s refusal – rightly or wrongly—to admit his guilt for the brutal 1981 murders of four people made his commutation politically impossible. With every court in the land upholding Williams’ conviction and guilt, Schwarzenegger would have been effectively nullifying their decision if he had decided to save Williams.”

Over on Max Speaks , we are treated to a truly awful outburst from a usually balanced liberal economist:

“I don’t buy the ‘healing’ thing purported to result from clemency. The best healing act would be for Tookie to admit his guilt for all of his crimes and go remorsefully to his death. Who is healed by granting clemency? Certainly not the bereaved. Healing is a hustle.”

But what if Williams was not guilty? In fact, despite his eight years as a leader of the Crips, he had no serious criminal record. While it is true that he was found guilty, so were dozens if not hundreds in Texas over the years. The San Francisco Chronicle reported on December 7:

“No fingerprints, blood or clothing at either crime scene connected Williams to the shootings. The main physical evidence against him was a shell casing at the motel, matched to Williams’ shotgun by a sheriff’s expert whose testing methods have been derided as ‘junk science’ by an expert hired by Williams’ current lawyers. Last week, the state Supreme Court rejected a defense request for new tests of the gun.”

The chief eyewitness for the prosecution was Alfred Coward, who took part in the 7-Eleven robbery and was given immunity from prosecution. Samuel Coleman, who was arrested along with Williams and also given immunity from prosecution, testified that Williams had admitted to the killings. At a 1994 hearing, Coleman said police had beaten him and threatened to charge him with murder unless he testified against Williams. However, federal courts found that his testimony had been voluntary and noted that he had a lawyer at the time of the trial. And everybody knows how fair and impartial the federal courts are, just ask Samuel Alito.

My favorite witness, however, is jailhouse informant George Oglesby, also testified that Williams had admitted to the killings and said Williams had plotted a pretrial jailbreak in which Coward, the prospective prosecution witness, would be killed. From www.savetookie.org, we learn:

“The ‘star’ witness at Stan’s trial – a white man and longtime felon who was placed in a nearby cell while Stan awaited trial and was years later discovered to have been a paid police informant – also testified that Stan ‘volunteered’ a confession to him. But nearly 20 years after Stan’s trial it was discovered that a Los Angeles police officer had left a copy of the police murder file involving Stan’s case in this informant’s cell for overnight study. The next day the murder file was picked up by that same officer, and the informant informed the police that Stan had volunteered a confession to him. In return for this testimony, the informant – who himself was facing the death penalty for rape, murder and mutilation – was given a lesser sentence that allowed him the possibility of parole and freedom.”

Although much of the attention has focused on the late Tookie Williams’s redemption, apparently not enough has been paid to the question of his guilt or innocence–something that kangaroo court jurors Marc Cooper and Max Sawicky seem oblivious to.

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