Scotty Moore had no one to speak for life for him. His attorneys did not present argument to the jury at the penalty phase. That was why Justice Brorby believed a new sentencing was required. Unfortunately, the two other judges disagreed even though as Justice Brorby said:
"The devastating effects of some errors should not be overlooked. An attorney's failure to argue for his client's life during the sentencing phase of a capital case is that type of error. The absence of argument for the defendant in this situation leads inevitably, I believe, to a breakdown of the adversary system and a flawed trial"
But an even greater error
in this case is that the conviction against
Scotty Moore was based entirely on the testimony of one witness--his cousin, an admitted participant in the crime. Vicki Caster has been known by all throughout her life to be a liar and a manipulator, especially of men. She was told by the prosecution that if she pulled the trigger, they would put her on death row--if she testified against Scotty, she could go home. She did and never served one day in prison. There is no evidence against Scotty at all--just the word of this woman who was obviously coerced into testifying.
The crime was the shooting
death of a motel clerk and certainly not one that cries out for the death
penalty even if that penalty is ever
appropriate--here there is a serious question of guilt and an even more serious question of counsel's complete abandonment of his client that very clearly led "to a breakdown in the adversary system and a flawed trial."
Scotty Moore should not
be executed based on this crime, based on this evidence (or lack of), and
certainly should not be executed when the admitted co-defendant has walked
WASHINGToN (June 2, 1999) - Writing on behalf of Pope John
Paul II, the Apostolic Nuncic to the United States has appealed for
clemency for Scotty Moore, an Oklahoma man scheduled to be executed Thursday,
June 3, The Nuncio, Arclibishop Gabriel Montalvo, wrote (June 1) to the
members of the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board, in Oklahoma City.
'His Holiness counts on your right to spare a life by commuting Mr. Moore's sentence with a gesture of mercy that would hopefially contribute to the promotion of nonviolence in today's society," Archbishop Montalvo said.
"As you know, the Holy Father's appeals to end the death penalty have become more and more frequent and pressing, especially as the new Millennium draws near," the Archbishop wrote. Archbishop Montalvo noted that in the homily of his Mass in St. Louis last January 27, the Holy Father said: "a sign of hope is the increasing recognition that the dignity of human life must never be taken away, even in the case of someone who has done great evil. Modern society has the means of protecting itself without definitively denying criminals the chance to reform."
"A sentence of life without the possibility of parole provides substantial safeguards for society and levels a grave punishment against the accused," Archbishop Montalvo stated.
"While in solidarity with those who have been deeply hurt by the loss of Mr. Alex Fernandez, the Holy Father also prays that the life of Mr. Moore may be saved through the compassion and magnanimity of the Board of Pardons and Paroles. His Holiness counts on your right to spare a life by commuting Mr. Moore's sentence with a gesture of mercy that would hopefully contribute to the promotion of nonviolence in today's society."
Scotty Moore, now 42, was convicted of the shooting death of Alex Fernandez who was working as a desk clerk at the Airline Motel in Oklahoma City in 1983.
The Church's involvement in the death penalty issue has taken on a high profile, especially this year. In January, Pope John Paul II appealed for an end to the death penalty, in Ecclesia in America, the post-synodal he successfully appealed to Gov. Camahan of Missouri to commute the death sentence of convicted murderer Darrell Mease. The U.S, Bishops' Administrative Board released a statement on Good Friday, April 2, 1999, calling on the nation's more than 60 million Catholics to fight the death penalty.
State Capitol Building,
The Board of Pardon and Parole members:
PO Box 171,
Coyle, OK 73027-1071;
c/o Oklahoma Pardon and Parole,
4040 N. Lincoln Ste 219,
Oklahoma City, OK
c/o Oklahoma Pardon and Parole,
4040 N. Lincoln Ste 219,
Oklahoma City, OK
PO Box 636,
PO Box 1902,
If possible, please fax copies of anything you send to
Clemency Hearing is scheduled for May 18, 1999 at 10:00 a.m. CDT.
Click below to print out a copy of the Petition for Scotty to copy and distribute
in your neighborhood...send copies to the government addresses listed above.
|PETITION FOR SCOTTY|
Above all, Scotty asks for your prayers. Thank you.
Scotty's Speech Upon Winning The
"1997 Phil Wahl Abolitionist of the Year Award"
Placing himself in great
personal danger, Scotty Lee Moore, a prisoner on death row in Oklahoma,
has worked with Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the ACLU
Oklahoma Foundation and National Prison Project in their investigations
of the conditions on H-Unit. It was for this courage, as well as the support
he provides to others on H-Unit by giving his own personal possessions
without expecting anything in return, that he received the 1997 Phil Wahl
Abolitionist of the Year Award of the Oklahoma Coalition to Abolish the
Death Penalty. Below is his statement read at the Coalition Annual Banquet
by his attorney, K. Leslie Delk:
"FIRST, I want to say thank you. It's an honor to receive this award and I am grateful. There is one thing I would like to say about the effort or movement to abolish the death penalty in Oklahoma. There has to be aggressive, meaningful and substantial action taken before the killing will end. THERE IS A WAR GOING ON. Few look at the struggle from that perspective, but I promise you that those who promote and enforce capital punishment are aggressive and dead serious. Each time a prisoner dies it is a victory in the mind of these enforcers. JUST AS IN WAR ON A BATTLE FIELD, THE GOAL IS TO KILL. That is all our opposition is focused on and works at it daily. Truth and Justice have nothing to do with it, only political aspirations and personal gain.
There has to be something more than an ideal that moves people to join this cause to abolish the death penalty. I think that something more is human relationships. People join a cause for a belief, but they fight for that cause for an individual. Death row prisoners and their families go through years of torment and I promise you, to these people capital punishment is not a cause based on ideals.
IT IS A WAR—A LIFE AND DEATH BATTLE—THE CASUALTIES ARE REAL AND THEY ONLY START WITH THE STATE SANCTIONED KILLING OF ONE HUMAN BEING. Then there is a rippling effect and everyone in a prisoner's life suffers.
Here in Oklahoma it is an even tougher battle because of H Unit and the conditions we live under. This facility is nothing more than a high-tech dungeon—a breeding ground of depression. It destroys people mentally, physically and spiritually. And now after some five years of living in this dungeon, we are facing more and more "volunteers"—men who choose to give up their fight rather than endure the torment, the pain. This is the individual human struggle. This is the aspect of the struggle that you in the outside world don't see.
The days of the candlelight vigil is over. Prayer is wonderful and I'm a firm believer in that, but works and meaningful action must follow.
are losing this war—state sanctioned murders will increase in the very
near future. I encourage you all to take a second look and consider the
humanity involved—I am a human being—not a cause—and my family and friends
are real. THANK YOU"
WRITE SCOTTY WITH WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT
Scotty Moore #141791
PO Box 97
The CCADP offers free webpages to over 500 Death Row Prisoners
Contact us for more information.
"The Eyes Of The World Are Watching Now"