Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Brown v. Ornoski (9th Cir. - Sept. 19, 2007)

Raping a killing a 15-year old girl is evil enough. But don't also subsequently taunt the dead girl's parents by calling them multiple times with messages like "Hello, Mrs. Jordan, Susie isn’t home from school yet, is she? You will never see your daughter again. You can find her body on the corner of Victoria and Gibson.”

You'll find that a jury doesn't like stuff like that. And after the police search your house and find a telephone directory that's turned to the page containing the parents' listing, as well as two of the dead girl's schoolbooks, it's going to take the jury less than three hours to sentence you to death. Even if your defense psychiatrist opines that you killed the girl out of shame for raping her, and that the phone calls indicated shame and a
desire to be caught. It won't matter.

And neither will your appeal to the Ninth Circuit on ineffective assistance of counsel grounds. Affirmed.