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    On this date, 29 March 2012, Yasuaki Uwabe was executed in the Hiroshima Detention House, Japan by hanging for the 29 September 1999 Shimonoseki Station mass murder of five men.


    Yasuaki Uwabe
    Please go to this previous blog post to learn more.

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    QUOTE:“No man is entitled to the blessings of freedom unless he be vigilant in its preservation.”

    AUTHOR:General of the Army Douglas MacArthur (26 January 1880 – 5 April 1964) was an American general and field marshal of the Philippine Army who was Chief of Staff of the United States Army during the 1930s and played a prominent role in the Pacific theater during World War II. He received the Medal of Honor for his service in the Philippines Campaign, which made him and his father Arthur MacArthur, Jr., the first father and son to be awarded the medal. He was one of only five men ever to rise to the rank of General of the Army in the U.S. Army, and the only man ever to become a field marshal in the Philippine Army.
    Raised in a military family in the American Old West, MacArthur was valedictorian at the West Texas Military Academy, and First Captain at the United States Military Academy at West Point, where he graduated top of the class of 1903. During the 1914 United States occupation of Veracruz, he conducted a reconnaissance mission, for which he was nominated for the Medal of Honor. In 1917, he was promoted from major to colonel and became chief of staff of the 42nd (Rainbow) Division. In the fighting on the Western Front during World War I, he rose to the rank of brigadier general, was again nominated for a Medal of Honor, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross twice and the Silver Star seven times.
    From 1919 to 1922, MacArthur served as Superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, where he attempted a series of reforms. His next assignment was in the Philippines, where in 1924 he was instrumental in quelling the Philippine Scout Mutiny. In 1925, he became the Army's youngest major general. He served on the court martial of Brigadier General Billy Mitchell and was president of the American Olympic Committee during the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam. In 1930, he became Chief of Staff of the United States Army. As such, he was involved in the expulsion of the Bonus Army protesters from Washington, D.C. in 1932, and the establishment and organization of the Civilian Conservation Corps. He retired from the U.S. Army in 1937 to become Military Advisor to the Commonwealth Government of the Philippines.
    MacArthur was recalled to active duty in 1941 as commander of United States Army Forces in the Far East. A series of disasters followed, starting with the destruction of his air forces on 8 December 1941, and the invasion of the Philippines by the Japanese. MacArthur's forces were soon compelled to withdraw to Bataan, where they held out until May 1942. In March 1942, MacArthur, his family and his staff left nearby Corregidor Island in PT boats and escaped to Australia, where MacArthur became Supreme Commander, Southwest Pacific Area. For his defense of the Philippines, MacArthur was awarded the Medal of Honor. After more than two years of fighting in the Pacific, he fulfilled a promise to return to the Philippines. He officially accepted Japan's surrender on 2 September 1945, and oversaw the occupation of Japan from 1945 to 1951. As the effective ruler of Japan, he oversaw sweeping economic, political and social changes. He led the United Nations Command in the Korean War until he was removed from command by President Harry S. Truman on 11 April 1951. He later became Chairman of the Board of Remington Rand.

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  • 04/05/14--15:50: THE IMPENITENT THIEF: GESMAS

  • The impenitent thief was one of the two thieves who was crucified alongside Jesus. According to the Gospels, he taunted Jesus about not saving himself, while the penitent thief asked for mercy. The impenitent thief is given the apocryphal name Gestas, which first appears in the Gospel of Nicodemus, while his companion is called Dismas.

    Pious folk beliefs later embellished that Gestas was on the cross to the left of Jesus and Dismas was on the cross to the right of Jesus. In Jacobus de Voragine's "Golden Legend", the name of the impenitent thief is given as Gesmas. The impenitent thief is sometimes referred to as the "bad thief" in contrast to the good thief.

    The apocryphal Arabic Infancy Gospel refers to Gestas and Dismas as Dumachus and Titus, respectively. According to tradition, Dumachus was one of a band of robbers who attacked Saint Joseph and the Holy Family on their Flight into Egypt as recorded in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's The Golden Legend.

    Crucifixion by Hans von Tübingen showing the good thief on the right side of Christ, and the impenitent thief on the left side of Christ with a devil. Others portrayed are the Blessed Virgin Mary, Saint John, and the three Marys (Mary Cleophas, Mary Salome and Mary Magdalene).

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                On this date, April 6, 2012, Senior Police Officer Jaime D. Padron of the Austin Police Department, Texas, was killed in the line of duty. Let us honor this fallen policeman and thank God that justice was served, as the cop killer had been sentenced to death. I got the information about him from ODMP and please go to Unit 1012 blog to hear from the cop’s families.


    Senior Police Officer Jaime D. Padron
    Bio & Incident Details
    Age: 40
    Tour: 17 years
    Badge # 6674
    Military veteran
    Cause: Gunfire
    Incident Date: 4/6/2012
    Weapon: Handgun
    Suspect: Sentenced to death

    Senior Police Officer Jaime Padron was shot and killed after responding to a Walmart store on the I-35 Frontage Road to investigate reports of an intoxicated man who was shoplifting at approximately 2:30 am.

    Upon arriving at the scene, Officer -Padron spoke with two employees and then tried to stop the man as he attempted to leave the store. The subject immediately attempted to flee on foot but was tackled by Officer Padron and they both fell to the ground. During the ensuing struggle the man produced a small handgun from his pocket, shot Officer Padron in the vest and neck, and then fired at the store employees.

    Two Walmart employees tackled the subject and held him down and then used Officer Padron's radio to notify dispatchers of the shooting. They held him down until responding units arrived and placed him under arrest. On February 21st, 2014, Deputy Padron's killer was convicted of capital murder and subsequently sentenced to death.

    Officer Padron succumbed to his wound at the scene.

    Officer Padron was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and had served with the Austin Police Department for three years. He had previously served with the Austin Airport Police Department and the San Angelo Police Department for 14 years. He is survived by his two young daughters and parents.

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    On this date, April 6, 1992, Donald Harding was executed by the gas chamber in Arizona. He was convicted for the 25 January 1980 murders of Robert Wise and Martin Concannon. He was executed in 1992 by the state of Arizona by gas chamber. He became the first person to be executed in Arizona since 1976 when the death penalty was reinstated.

    Donald Harding
    Please go to this blog post to learn more about the Serial Killer.

    The former gas chamber in New Mexico State Penitentiary, used only once in 1960 and later replaced by lethal injection.
    Please go to this blog post to read this article from the former Attorney General of Arizona, Grant Woods.

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                On this date, April 6, 1947, Nazi Agronomist, Herbert Backe committed suicide before he could be tried for war crimes at Nuremberg. I will post information about him from Wikipedia.

    Herbert Backe
    Reich Minister of Food
    In office
    Adolf Hitler
    Preceded by
    Richard Walther Darré
    Succeeded by
    Personal details
    Herbert Friedrich Wilhelm Backe
    1 May 1896
    Batumi, Russian Empire
    6 April 1947 (aged 50)
    Nuremberg, Allied-occupied Germany
    Political party
    Ursula Backe
    Alma mater
    University of Gottingen

    Herbert Friedrich Wilhelm Backe (1 May 1896 – 6 April 1947) was a German Nazi politician and Obergruppenführer in the SS.


    Backe was born in Batumi, Georgia, the son of a retired Prussian lieutenant turned trader. His mother was a Caucasus German, whose family had emigrated from Württemberg to Russia in the early 19th century. He studied at the Tbilisi Gymnasium (grammar school) from 1905 and was interned on the outbreak of World War I as an enemy alien because he was a citizen of Prussia. This experience of being imprisoned for being German and witnessing the beginning of the Soviet revolution made Backe an anti-communist. He moved to Germany during the Russian Civil War with the help of the Swedish Red Cross. In Germany, he initially worked as a labourer, and enrolled to study agronomy at the University of Göttingen in 1920. After completing his degree he briefly worked in agriculture and then became an assistant lecturer on agricultural geography at Hanover Technical University. In 1926, he submitted his doctoral dissertation, titled The Russian Cereals Economy as the Basis of Russian Agriculture and the Russian Economy (German: Die russische Getreidewirtschaft als Grundlage der Land- und Volkswirtschaft Russlands), to the University of Göttingen, but it was not accepted. Later, after Germany invaded the Soviet Union, Backe self-published his dissertation with a print of 10 000 copies.

    Backe was an SA member from 1922. He joined the Nazi Party in February 1925. Finally, he joined the SS in October 1933.

    He undertook various duties in the administration of Nazi Germany, succeeding Richard Walther Darré as Minister of Food in May 1942 and becoming Minister of Agriculture in April 1944.

    Soviet POWs standing before a barracks in Mauthausen Concentration Camp, Austria
    Hunger plan

    Backe was personally nominated by the Reich Minister for the Occupied Eastern Territories, Alfred Rosenberg, as the Secretary of State (Staatssekretär) of the Reichskommissariat Ukraine where he could implement his strategic policy, the Hunger Plan (Der Hungerplan also Der Backe-Plan). The objective of the Hunger Plan was to inflict deliberate mass starvation on the Slavic civilian populations under German occupation by directing all food supplies to the German home population and the Wehrmacht on the Eastern Front. According to the historian Timothy Snyder, as a result of Backe's plan, “4.2 million Soviet citizens (largely Russians, Belarusians, and Ukrainians) were starved by the German occupiers in 1941–1944.”

    Backe was a prominent member of the younger generation of Nazi technocrats who occupied second-tier administrative positions in the Nazi system such as Reinhard Heydrich, Werner Best, and Wilhelm Stuckart. Like Stuckart, who held the real power in the Interior Ministry (officially led by Wilhelm Frick) and Wilhelm Ohnesorge in the Reichspostministry (officially led by the conservative Paul Freiherr von Eltz-Rübenach), Backe was the de facto Minister of Agriculture under Richard Walther Darré, even before his promotion to that post.
    From April to May 1945, Backe continued as Minister of Food in the short-lived post-Hitler Flensburg Government led by Grossadmiral Karl Dönitz. On 23 May 1945 he was arrested by British forces along with other members of the Flensburg government, including Dönitz and Albert Speer.

    Backe was held in American custody and was due to be tried for war crimes at Nuremberg in the Ministries Trial. However, he committed suicide by hanging himself in his prison cell on 6 April 1947.

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                On this date, 8 April 2002, Iranian Serial killer, Saeed Hanaei, A.K.A Spider Killer was executed by hanging at dawn in Mashhad Prison. Please go to this previous blog post to learn more. 

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                On this date, April 9, 1942, the United States forces surrender on the Bataan Peninsula. This resulted in the Bataan Death March. I will post the information from Wikipedia.

    Route taken during the Bataan Death March. Section from San Fernando to Capas was by rail.

    The Bataan Death March (Filipino: Martsa ng Kamatayan sa Bataan, Japanese: Batān Shi no Kōshin(バターン死の行進?)), which began on April 9, 1942, was the forcible transfer by the Imperial Japanese Army of 60,000–80,000 Filipino and American prisoners of war after the three-month Battle of Bataan in the Philippines during World War II. All told, approximately 2,500–10,000 Filipino and 100–650 American prisoners of war died before they could reach their destination at Camp O'Donnell. The reported death tolls vary, especially amongst Filipino POWs, because historians cannot determine how many prisoners blended in with the civilian population and escaped. The march went from Mariveles, Bataan, to San Fernando, Pampanga. From San Fernando, survivors were loaded to a box train and they were brought to Camp O'Donnell in Capas, Tarlac.

    The 128 km (80 mi) march was characterized by wide-ranging physical abuse and murder, and resulted in very high fatalities inflicted upon prisoners and civilians alike by the Japanese Army, and was later judged by an Allied military commission to be a Japanese war crime.

    Dead soldiers on the Bataan Death March
    The March of Death

    The Japanese were unprepared for the number of prisoners that they were responsible for, and there was no organized plan for how to handle them. Prisoners were stripped of their weapons and valuables, and told to march to Balanga, the capital of Bataan. Many were beaten, bayoneted, and mistreated. The first major atrocity occurred when between 350 and 400 Filipino officers and NCOs, were summarily executed after they had surrendered.
    The Japanese failed to supply the prisoners with food or water until they had reached Balanga. Many of the prisoners died along the way of heat or exhaustion. Prisoners were given no food for the first three days, and were only allowed to drink water from filthy water buffalo wallows on the side of the road. Furthermore, Japanese troops would frequently beat and bayonet prisoners who began to fall behind, or were unable to walk. Once they arrived in Balanga, the overcrowded conditions and poor hygiene caused dysentery and other diseases to rapidly spread among the prisoners. The Japanese failed to provide them with medical care, leaving U.S. medical personnel to tend to the sick and wounded (with few or no supplies).

    In June 2001, U.S. Congressional Representative Dana Rohrabacher described and tried to explain the horrors and brutality that the prisoners experienced on the march:

    They were beaten, and they were starved as they marched. Those who fell were bayoneted. Some of those who fell were beheaded by Japanese officers who were practicing with their samurai swords from horseback. The Japanese culture at that time reflected the view that any warrior who surrendered had no honor; thus was not to be treated like a human being. Thus they were not committing crimes against human beings.[...] The Japanese soldiers at that time [...] felt they were dealing with subhumans and animals.

    Trucks were known to drive over some of those who fell or succumbed to fatigue, and "cleanup crews" put to death those too weak to continue. Marchers were harassed with random bayonet stabs and beatings.

    From San Fernando, the prisoners were transported by rail to Capas. One hundred or more prisoners were stuffed into each of the trains' boxcars, which were unventilated and sweltering in the tropical heat. The trains had no sanitation facilities, and disease continued to take a heavy toll of the prisoners. After they reached Capas, they were forced to walk the final 9 miles to Camp O'Donnell. Even after arriving at Camp O'Donnell, the survivors of the march continued to die at a rate of 30–50 per day, leading to thousands more dead. Most of the dead were buried in mass graves that the Japanese dug out with bulldozers on the outside of the barbed wire surrounding the compound.

    The death toll of the march is difficult to assess as thousands of captives were able to escape from their guards (although many were killed during their escapes), and it is not known how many died in the fighting that was taking place concurrently.

    The March of Death. Along the March [on which] these prisoners were photographed, they have their hands tied behind their backs. The March of Death was about May 1942, from Bataan to Cabanatuan, the prison camp.

    Death March (95th Km.) marker, Bacolor, Pampanga (where the Filipinos passed)
    Public responses


    In an attempt to counter the American propaganda value of the march, the Japanese had The Manila Times claim that the prisoners were treated humanely and their death rate had to be attributed to the intransigence of the American commanders who did not surrender until their men were on the verge of death.

    On May 9, 2009, the Japanese government apologized through its ambassador in the U.S. to former American prisoners of war who suffered in the Bataan Death March.

    A year later, on September 13, 2010, Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada apologized to a group of six former American soldiers who during World War II were held as prisoners of war by the Japanese, including 90-year-old Lester Tenney, and Robert Rosendahl, both survivors of the Bataan Death March. The six and their families and the families of two deceased soldiers were invited to visit Japan at the expense of the Japanese government in a program that will see more American former prisoners of war and former prisoners of war from other countries visit Japan in the future.

    'stay on the job until every murdering jap is wiped out!' World War II poster
    United States

    The Bataan Death March and other Japanese actions were used to arouse fury in the United States. It was not until January 27, 1944 that the U.S. government informed the American public about the march, when it released sworn statements of military officers who had escaped from the march.

    General George Marshall made the following statement about the march:

    These brutal reprisals upon helpless victims evidence the shallow advance from savagery which the Japanese people have made. [...] We serve notice upon the Japanese military and political leaders as well as the Japanese people that the future of the Japanese race itself, depends entirely and irrevocably upon their capacity to progress beyond their aboriginal barbaric instincts.

    In 2012 film producer Jan Thompson created a film documentary on the Death March, POW camps, and Japanese hell ships titled Never the Same: The Prisoner-of-War Experience. The film reproduced scenes of the camps and ships, showed drawings and writings of the prisoners, and featured Loretta Swit as the narrator.

    War crimes trial

    In December 1943, (General) Masaharu Homma was selected as the minister of information for the incoming prime minister, Kuniaki Koiso. In September 1945, he was arrested by Allied troops, and indicted for war crimes. Homma was charged with 43 different counts of crimes against humanity. The court found that Homma had permitted his troops to commit "brutal atrocities and other high crimes". The general, who had been absorbed in his efforts to capture Corregidor after the fall of Bataan, claimed in his defense that he remained ignorant of the high death toll of the death march until two months after the event. On February 26, 1946, he was sentenced to death by firing squad. He was executed on April 3, 1946, outside Manila.

    Also in Japan, Generals Hideki Tōjō (later Prime Minister), Kenji Doihara, Seishirō Itagaki, Heitarō Kimura, Iwane Matsui, and Akira Mutō, and Baron Kōki Hirota were found guilty and responsible for the brutal maltreatment of American and Filipino POWs, and were executed by hanging at Sugamo Prison in Ikebukuro on December 23, 1948. Several others were sentenced to imprisonment of between 7 and 22 years.

    U.S. medical men are attempting to identify more than 100 American Prisoners of War captured at Bataan and Corregidor and burned alive by the Japanese at a Prisoner of War camp, Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippine Islands Picture shows charred remains being interred in grave., 03/20/1945
    Memorials and commemorative events

    Dozens of memorials (including monuments, plaques, and schools) dedicated to the prisoners who died during the Bataan Death March exist across the United States and in the Philippines. A wide variety of commemorative events are held to honor the victims, including holidays, athletic events such as ultramarathons, and memorial ceremonies held at military cemeteries.

    The Bataan Death March had a large impact on the state of New Mexico. Eighteen hundred New Mexico soldiers from the 200th/515th Coast Artillery of the National Guard were deployed to the Philippines in World War II. Only half these soldiers survived, and within a few years after the war almost one half more had died. The New Mexico National Guard Bataan Memorial Museum is located in the Armory where the soldiers of the 200th and 515th were processed before their deployment to the Philippines in 1941. Every year, in early spring, a rigorous 26.2-mile march/run is conducted at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, in honor of the service members who defended the Philippine Islands during World War II. As of May 2012 there were 60 survivors, 31 of whom reside in New Mexico. Many of these survivors were teens at the time and had lied about their ages to gain entry into the military.

    In popular culture

    The novel Ceremony (1977), by the New Mexico novelist Leslie Marmon Silko, is the story of a Laguna Pueblo survivor of the Death March who comes home to the reservation with tragic memories.

    Notable survivors and captives

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    Dietrich Bonhoeffer on abortion (PHOTO SOURCE:
    QUOTE:Destruction of the embryo in the mother's womb is a violation of the right to live which God has bestowed upon this nascent life. To raise the question whether we are here concerned already with a human being or not is merely to confuse the issue. The simple fact is that God certainly intended to create a human being and that this nascent human being has been deliberately deprived of his life. And that is nothing but murder. [Ethics]

    AUTHOR:Dietrich Bonhoeffer (German: [ˈdiːtʁɪç ˈboːnhœfɐ]; February 4, 1906 – April 9, 1945) was a German Lutheran pastor, theologian, dissident anti-Nazi and founding member of the Confessing Church. His writings on Christianity's role in the secular world have become widely influential, and many have labelled his book The Cost of Discipleship a modern classic.
    Apart from his theological writings, Bonhoeffer became known for his staunch resistance to the Nazi dictatorship. He strongly opposed Hitler's euthanasia program and genocidal persecution of the Jews. He was also involved in plans by members of the Abwehr (the German Military Intelligence Office) to assassinate Adolf Hitler. He was arrested in April 1943 by the Gestapo and executed by hanging in April 1945 while imprisoned at a Nazi concentration camp, just 23 days before the German surrender.

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                On this date, April 10, 1948, the Einsatzgruppen Trials ended. I will post the information from Wikipedia

    Defendant Paul Blobel is sentenced to death by hanging at the Einsatzgruppen Trial.
    The Einsatzgruppen Trial (or, officially, The United States of America vs. Otto Ohlendorf, et al.) was the ninth of the twelve trials for war crimes the US authorities held in their occupation zone in Germany in Nuremberg after the end of World War II. These twelve trials were all held before US military courts, not before the International Military Tribunal. They took place in the same rooms at the Palace of Justice. The twelve US trials are collectively known as the "Subsequent Nuremberg Trials" or, more formally, as the "Trials of War Criminals before the Nuremberg Military Tribunals" (NMT).

    Description: Two principal German defendants of the Einsatzgruppen "commandoes" trial in Nuernberg are SS Major General Otto Ohlendorf and SS Brigadier General Heinz Jost (front to rear) shown in the dock preparing their final pleas during a court recess. "The Einsatzgruppen units," the prosecution stated, "were special task forces whose primary purpose was to accompany the German army into the Eastern territories and exterminate Jews, Gypsies, Soviet officials and other civilians regarded as 'racially and politically undesirable'". Ohlendorf, as commander of the Einsatzgruppen D, which operated mainly in Southern Russia, and Jost, as commander of Einsatzgruppen A operating mainly in the Baltic region, have admitted ordering the execution of several hundred thousand civilians. They are charged with committing war crimes and crimes against humanity, and membership in the SS and SD, adjudged criminal organizations by the International Military Tribunal. [Original Descriptive Caption] Date: 9 Feb. 1948 Provenance: From Public Relations Photo Section, Office Chief of Counsel for War Crimes, Nuernberg, Germany, APO 696-A, US Army. Photo No. OMT-IX-D-56. Citation: Telford Taylor Papers, Arthur W. Diamond Law Library, Columbia University Law School, New York, N.Y. : TTP-CLS: 15-2-2-113.
    The case

    The Einsatzgruppen were Schutzstaffel (SS) mobile death squads, operating behind the front line in Nazi-occupied eastern Europe. From 1941 to 1943 alone, they murdered more than one million Jews and tens of thousands of "partisans", Romani, disabled persons, political commissars, and others. The 24 defendants in this trial were all officers of these Einsatzgruppenand faced mass murder charges. The tribunal stated in its judgment:

    ... in this case the defendants are not simply accused of planning or directing wholesale killings through channels. They are not charged with sitting in an office hundreds and thousands of miles away from the slaughter. It is asserted with particularity that these men were in the field actively superintending, controlling, directing, and taking an active part in the bloody harvest.

    The judges in this case, heard before Military Tribunal II-A, were Michael A. Musmanno(presiding judge and Naval officer) from Pennsylvania, John J. Speight from Alabama, and Richard D. Dixon from North Carolina. The Chief of Counsel for the Prosecution was Telford Taylor; the Chief Prosecutor for this case was Benjamin B. Ferencz. The indictment was filed initially on July 3 and then amended on July 29, 1947 to also include the defendants Steimle, Braune, Hänsch. Strauch, Klingelhöfer, and von Radetzky. The trial lasted from September 29, 1947 until April 10, 1948.

    Otto Ohlendorf testifying on his own behalf in the Einsatzgruppen Trial in Nuremberg, Germany, 1947/48.
    1. Crimes against humanity through persecutions on political, racial, and religious grounds, murder, extermination, imprisonment, and other inhumane acts committed against civilianpopulations, including German nationals and nationals of other countries, as part of an organized scheme of genocide.
    2. War crimes for the same reasons, and for wanton destruction and devastation not justified by military necessity.
    3. Membership of criminal organizations, the SS, the Sicherheitsdienst (SD), or the Gestapo, which had been declared criminal organizations previously in the international Nuremberg Military Tribunals.
    All defendants were charged on all counts. All defendants pleaded "not guilty". The tribunal found all of them guilty on all counts, except Rühl and Graf, who were found guilty only on count 3.


    ^ Rasch had to be removed from the courtroom during the arraignment due to his poor health; he was arraigned separately on September 22, 1947.
    ^ Strauch suffered an epileptic attackduring the arraignment on September 15, 1947. His defense later tried to get him removed from the trial on medical grounds, but the tribunal dismissed this, stating that Strauch's testimonies (which he did give subsequently), were coherent and showed no reason why he should not be mentally capable of standing trial.
    ^ While Fendler was found guilty on all counts, the tribunal considered the evidence presented insufficient grounds in proving that he ordered or helped plan the killings. He seems to have held primarily an office post.
    ^ Rühl was found guilty only on count 3; regarding counts 1 and 2, the tribunal found him not guilty, stating that as a subaltern officer, he was not responsible for the atrocities committed by Einsatzgruppe D and in no position to prevent them, and although he knew of the killings, it could not be proved that he directly participated in them.
    ^ Graf was found guilty only of membership of the SD. He had actually been expelled from the SS for "general indifference to the organization"[3]and later had tried to be relieved from the SD.[3]On counts 1 and 2, he was also found not guilty, because as a noncommissioned officer, he had never held any command position, and had even refused one once.[3]
    Of the 14 death sentences, only four were carried out; the others were commuted to prison terms of varying lengths in 1951. In 1958, all convicts were released from prison.


    From the tribunal's judgment:

    [The facts] are so beyond the experience of normal man and the range of man-made phenomena that only the most complete judicial inquiry, and the most exhaustive trial, could verify and confirm them. Although the principal accusation is murder, [...] the charge of purposeful homicide in this case reaches such fantastic proportions and surpasses such credible limits that believability must be bolstered with assurance a hundred times repeated.

    ...a crime of such unprecedented brutality and of such inconceivable savagery that the mind rebels against its own thought image and the imagination staggers in the contemplation of a human degradation beyond the power of language to adequately portray.

    The number of deaths resulting from the activities with which these defendants have been connected and which the prosecution has set at one million is but an abstract number. One cannot grasp the full cumulative terror of murder one million times repeated.

    It is only when this grotesque total is broken down into units capable of mental assimilation that one can understand the monstrousness of the things we are in this trial contemplating. One must visualize not one million people but only ten persons — men, women, and children, perhaps all of one family — falling before the executioner's guns. If one million is divided by ten, this scene must happen one hundred thousand times, and as one visualizes the repetitious horror, one begins to understand the meaning of the prosecution's words, 'It is with sorrow and with hope that we here disclose the deliberate slaughter of more than a million innocent and defenseless men, women, and children.'

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    Rayner Goddard (1877–1971)
    QUOTE 1:“If our criminal law is to be respected, the public conscience has to be satisfied, and it will not be satisfied if gross violence, and sometimes bestial crime, is not punished in a way that will satisfy the public. There are old people who go trembling to their doors at night.” 

    QUOTE 2: “They are sentenced because it is society’s method of showing that if that conduct or those acts are persisted in certain consequences which must be unpleasant and must be punitive will result. I have never yet understood how you can make the criminal law a deterrent unless it is also punitive. The two things seem to me to follow one on the other.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 28 April 1948]  

    Rayner Goddard (1877–1971)
    QUOTE 3: “There is one other consideration which I believe should never be overlooked. If the criminal law of this country is to be respected, it must be in accordance with public opinion, and public opinion must support it. That goes very nearly to the root of this question of capital punishment. I cannot believe or the public opinion (or would I rather call it the public conscience) of this country will tolerate that persons who deliberately condemn others to painful and, it may be, lingering deaths should be allow to live…”[Speech in the House of Lords, 28 April 1948] 

    QUOTE 4: “I know that in uttering this sentiment I shall not have the sympathies of everyone but, in my humble opinion, I believe that there are many, many cases where the murderer should be destroyed.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 28 April 1948]

    QUOTE 5: “The supreme crime should carry the supreme penalty.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 6: “My sentiments are more in favour of the victim than they are of the murderer. There is a tendency nowadays when any matter of criminal law is discussed to think far more of the criminal than his victim.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 7: “Is this the time to remove what rightly or wrongly the police and prison service believe to be their main protection against attack? We have to remember that our police are armed with a short baton, the only weapon they have against these gunmen and other people who do not hesitate to shoot and take the lives of policemen. If this (Death Penalty Abolition) bill passes I am sure it will encourage resignation from the police forces and make recruitment more difficult.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 8: Lord Goddard recalled a brutal assault on a wife in which the accused said, “If it was not that I would swing for you, I would do you in.”

    He went on, “That is the sort of thing the death penalty prevents. I do not want to joke in this matter, but would be the effect on such people if they knew that they would be sent to a sanatorium or some other comfortable place if they committed murder?”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 9: “I believe the fear of the rope, as it is generally called among certain classes, is a very great deterrent.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 10: “If this bill passed, judges will not be able to give any greater punishment for deliberate murder than they can give now for burglary, for breaking into a church (sacrilege), or for forging a will.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 11: The Lord Chief Justice recalled the case when a bandit caught after a chase in London fired low at a young constable. “He fired low because he knew what the consequences would be if he murdered the policeman. When he was arrested his first question was, ‘Is the copper dead?’ That is what he was afraid of…These instances make me say with all the earnestness I can command: do not gamble with the lives of the police.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 12: “Are these people to be kept alive?”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956] 

    Rayner Goddard (1877–1971)
    QUOTE 13: “I should shrink from the very idea of saying that the sentence of murder should be life imprisonment in the full sense.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    QUOTE 14: “Your lordships can be assured that the only people hung are those guilty of cruel, deliberate murder without mitigation…I put my views strongly because from experience, one gets to feel strong views in these matters and should not be afraid to express them. When a man deliberately murders another he is committing the supreme crime, and should pay the supreme penalty.”[Speech in the House of Lords, 10 July 1956]

    AUTHOR: Rayner Goddard, Baron Goddard (10 April 1877 - 29 May 1971) was Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales from 1946 to 1958 and known for his strict sentencing and conservative views. He was nicknamed the 'Tiger' and "Justice-in-a-jiffy" for his no-nonsense manner. He once dismissed six appeals in one hour in 1957.

    In 1948 backbench pressure in the House of Commons forced through an amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill to the effect that capital punishment should be suspended for five years and all death sentences automatically commuted to life imprisonment. The Bill also sought to abolish judicial corporal punishment in both its then forms, the cat-o'-nine-tails and the birch. Goddard attacked the Bill in the House of Lords, making his maiden speech, saying he agreed with the abolition of, the "cat", but not birching, which he regarded as an effective punishment for young offenders. He also disagreed with the automatic commutation of death sentences, believing that it was contrary to the Bill of Rights.

    In a debate, he once referred to a case he had tried of an agricultural labourer who had assaulted a jeweller; Goddard gave him a short two months' imprisonment and twelve strokes of the birch because "I was not then depriving the country of the services of a good agricultural labourer over the harvest". The suspension of capital punishment was reversed by 181 to 28, and a further amendment to retain the birch was also passed (though the Lords were later forced to give way on this issue). As the crime rate continued to rise, Goddard became convinced that the Criminal Justice Act 1948 was responsible as it was a 'Gangster's Charter'. He held a strong belief that punishment had to be punitive in order to be effective, a view also shared at the time by Lord Denning.

    After retiring as Lord Chief Justice, Goddard continued to intervene occasionally in Lords debates and public speeches to put forward his views in favour of judicial corporal punishment. On 12 December 1960 he said in the House of Lords that the law was too much biased in favour of the criminal, as he was to assert to David Yallop nearly ten years later. Goddard also expressed his opposition to the legalisation of homosexual acts on 24 May 1965. His last-ever speech in the House of Lords was in April 1968 at the age of 91, praising the City of London's law courts.

    However, despite stating his opposition to Bentley's execution, Goddard still expressed his strong support for the death penalty and asserted that the law was biased in favour of the criminal, as he did almost ten years before.

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                 On this date, April 12, 2012, a Florida serial killer, David Alan Gore was executed by lethal injection in Florida for the murders of 6 women. Please go to this previous blog post to learn more about this killer and please go to the Unit 1012 Blog to hear from the victims’ families.

    David Alan Gore

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                On this date, July 17, 2002, a Cop Killer, Tracy Alan Hansen was executed by lethal injection in Mississippi. He was convicted of shooting Trooper David Bruce Ladner on April 10, 1987, the trooper died 2 days later on April 12, 1987. I will post the information about the fallen cop from ODMP. Please go to the Unit 1012 Blog to hear from the fallen cop's families.

    Trooper David Bruce Ladner
    David Bruce Ladner
    Mississippi Department of Public Safety - Highway Patrol, Mississippi

    End of Watch:
    Sunday, April 12, 1987

    Bio & Incident Details
    Tour:9 years
    Badge #K-34
    Incident Date:4/10/1987
    Suspect:Executed in 2002

    Trooper Ladner was shot and killed on I-10, in Harrison County, by a suspect who turned out to be wanted in Florida. During the stop Trooper Ladner asked the driver for consent to search the vehicle. The suspect then produced a .38 caliber revolver and shot Trooper Ladner in the chest, knocking him to the ground. He shot him a second time and then stole his service weapon and patrol car.

    Although mortally wounded, Trooper Ladner was able to flag down a passing motorist, who transported him to a local hospital. He succumbed to his wounds two days later.

    The suspect was convicted of Trooper Ladner's murder and sentenced to death. He was executed on July 17, 2002.

    Trooper Ladner had been with the agency for 9 years. He was survived by his wife and three children.

    A section of US Highway 49, in Harrison County, was dedicated in Trooper Ladner's memory.

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    On this date, April 12, 1992, Trooper Bill Davidson of the Texas Highway Patrol was killed in the line of duty. Let us honor this fallen cop and thank God that justice was served, as the cop killer, Ronald Ray Howard was executed on October 5, 2006. I got the information about him from ODMP and please go to Unit 1012 blog to hear from the fallen cop’s families.

    Trooper Bill Davidson
    Bill Davidson
    Texas Department of Public Safety - Texas Highway Patrol, Texas

    End of Watch:
    Sunday, April 12, 1992

    Bio & Incident Details
    Tour:20 years
    Badge #Not available
    Incident Date:4/11/1992
    Weapon:Handgun; 9 mm
    Suspect:Executed in 2005

    Trooper Bill Davidson succumbed to gunshot wounds received the previous day after stopping a stolen car in Edna, Texas. The suspect shot Trooper Davidson in the neck with a 9 mm handgun when he approached the car. The suspect fled the scene of the shooting, but was arrested within a couple of hours with the murder weapon in his possession. The suspect confessed to killing the trooper and repeated his confession to a grand jury.

    During his trial the suspect claimed he shot Trooper Davidson because the rap music he was listening to forced him to do so. The suspect was convicted of murder and sentenced to death. He was executed on October 6, 2005.

    Trooper Davidson had served with the Texas Highway Patrol for over 20 years. He was survived by his wife and two children.

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    Patrolman Jonathan Schmidt was killed in the line of duty on this date, April 12, 2011 in Arkansas. Let us honor him. Please go to this previous blog post to learn more about him. Please go to the Unit 1012 Blog to hear from the courts.

    Patrolman Jonathan Schmidt

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                On this date, April 6, 2011, Correctional Officer Ronald Johnson of the South Dakota Department of Corrections, South Dakota, was killed in the line of duty. Let us honor this fallen prison guard and thank God that justice was served, as one of the prison killers had been executed on October 15, 2012. I got the information about him from ODMP and please go to Unit 1012 blog to hear from the victim’s families.

     Ronald Johnson
    Correctional Officer
    Ronald E. "RJ" Johnson
    South Dakota Department of Corrections, South Dakota
    End of Watch: Tuesday, April 12, 2011 

    Bio & Incident Details
    Tour:23 years
    Badge #Not available
    Incident Date:4/12/2011
    Weapon:Blunt object; Pipe
    Suspect:Executed in 2012 

    Correctional Officer Ronald Johnson was killed by two inmates who were attempting to escape from the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls.

    The inmates attacked Officer Johnson, beat him with a metal pipe, and then wrapped his head in plastic wrap. One of the inmates then put on Officer Johnson's uniform. As the inmate wheeled out a large box with the other inmate inside another officer didn't recognize him as a fellow officer and confronted him.

    The officer was attacked, but was assisted by other officers who witnessed the attack on surveillance cameras. Both inmates were subdued before being able to escape. One of the inmates who murdered Officer Johnson had been involved in several successful and attempted escapes before.

    Officer Johnson was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries a short time later.

    Both inmates were charged with first degree murder, first degree murder-kidnapping, and assault. One of the inmates pleaded guilty to first degree murder and was sentenced to death. He was executed by lethal injection on October 15th, 2012. The other inmate involved in the escape was convicted of murder and sentenced to death. A third inmate, who provided material used in the murder but did not participate in the escape, was sentenced to life in prison.

    Officer Johnson had served with the South Dakota Department of Corrections for 23 years and was murdered on his 63rd birthday. He is survived by his wife, two children, and six grandchildren.

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