Schwarzenegger Denies Clemency for Tookie Williams
After weeks of speculation, California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger terminated the clemency request of mass murderer Stanley Tookie Williams, founder of the Crips.
California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has denied clemency for convicted killer Stanley Tookie Williams, who co-founded the Crips street gang. Schwarzenegger announced the decision Monday shortly after a federal appeals court refused to block Williams’ scheduled Tuesday execution. The court made its decision about nine hours before Williams is to receive a lethal injection.
Williams met with his attorneys and family members Monday at San Quentin State Prison, and he “still believes there will be some intervention in this process,” prison spokesman Vernell Crittendon said.
Sunday, California’s Supreme Court rejected an emergency request to stay the execution. Earlier Sunday, attorney Verna Wefald said the legal team was asking for a stay on the basis that Williams should have been allowed to argue that someone else killed one of the four people he was convicted of slaying.
On Friday, the governor described his looming decision as “a very heavy responsibility.”
Williams — who would turn 52 on December 29 — co-founded the Crips in Los Angeles and was convicted of killing four people in 1979, but has become an anti-gang crusader while on death row. He has denounced gang violence and written children’s books with an anti-gang message, donating the proceeds to anti-gang community groups. He said he was trying to prevent young people from making the choices he did, which led to a life of crime and a death sentence.
While laudable that Williams decided that murder and mayhem were bad things while in prison, achieving the moral consciousness of the average 6-year-old does not erase his heinous past. As founder of the Crips, he is responsible for more murders than Charles Manson, Son of Sam, Jack the Ripper, John Wayne Gacy, and every other serial killer you’ve ever heard of combined. If anyone deserves to die, it’s him.