OK court upholds murder conviction of man who many believe innocent; execution scheduled for May 18 – National & International News – THU 20Apr2023


OK court reinstates murder conviction of man who many believe innocent; execution scheduled for May 18.

NC man shoots girl, 6, after basketball rolls into his yard.

Yemen: 79 killed in stampede for $9 handout.



OK court upholds murder conviction of man who many believe innocent; without clemency, he’ll die next month

An Oklahoma court of appeals has upheld the conviction of Richard Glossip, 60, in a 1997 murder-for-hire case. Earlier this month, Oklahoma Attorney General Gentner Drummond asked the court to throw out the conviction and allow Glossip a new trial. Drummond raised concerns about tainted witness testimony at Glossip’s trial, the prosecutor’s failure to share evidence with the defense, the illegal destruction of evidence before Glossip’s appeal. In Drummond’s assessment, these missteps by the state warrant a new trial for Glossip.

Despite this, Judge David Lewis wrote that Glossip’s legal team, “has not provided this court with sufficient information that would convince this court to overturn the jury’s determination that he is guilty of first-degree murder and should be sentenced to death”.

The ruling means that Glossip’s execution, scheduled for May 18, will go ahead. Both Drummond and Glossip’s team say they are seeking other avenues to obtain a reprieve to save Glossip’s life. They plan to plead Glossip’s case to the the five-member Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board. The board could recommend that Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt grant clemency to Glossip by commuting his sentence to life without parole. 

Glossip was convicted in 1997 in the murder of his boss, Barry Van Treese. Van Treese owned a seedy motel where Glossip worked as the manager. The only thing connecting Glossip to Van Treese’s murder is the word of the motel’s handyman, Justin Sneed. Sneed admitted to killing and robbing Van Treese but claimed that Glossip put him up to it. Sneed is serving a life sentence for the murder and has recanted his testimony against Glossip.

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Click here to read more about missteps by police and the prosecution in Glossip’s case (opens in new tab).


North Carolina man shoots girl, 6, after basketball rolls into his yard

In yet another case of shootings over trivial mishaps, Robert Louis Singletary, 24, of Gastonia, NC, opened fire on children and their parents yesterday, injuring a 6-year-old girl and her father. According to neighbors, the confrontation started when a basketball the kids were playing with rolled into Singletary’s yard and they went to retrieve it. Neighbors say Singletary became enraged and started shooting as parents ran to rescue their children.

The mother of the child said doctors removed bullet fragments from the child’s cheek and she is now at home. Her father was hit in the back and remains in the hospital with liver damage.

Police are looking for the suspect, Robert Louis Singletary, 24.

Singletary, who is Black, is on the run and there is a countywide manhunt for him. He is facing four counts of attempted first-degree murder; two counts of assault with a deadly weapon with the intent to kill inflicting serious injury; and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Police arrested Singletary in December 2022 after attacking his girlfriend with a mini sledgehammer and then preventing her from receiving medical care for two hours.

Neighbors say Singletary only moved into the neighborhood a few weeks ago. He quickly got a reputation for yelling at kids playing in and around his yard and aggressively confronting their parents about it. According to neighbors, the girl and father Singletary shot were not part of the basketball game. The family was grilling and the child was riding her bike. 

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Click here to see a video report from local news (open in new tab).



Yemen: Charity turns to tragedy when 79 killed in crush for $9 handout

Today is the Muslim holy day of Eid, a time when wealthy Muslims give to those less fortunate. In the Yemeni capital of Sanaa, a group of merchants organized a handout of about $9 per person.

Shortly after sunset, thousands of people stampeded towards a school where the event was taking place. People started pushing from the back not realizing that people in front were trapped. Harrowing video of the incident emerged showing a mass of humanity with people crying out for help and others trying to pull them out. The crush killed 79 people and seriously injured dozens more.

The capital is controlled by Iran-backed Houthi rebels who have been warring with Yemen’s leadership (backed by neighboring Saudi Arabia). The fighting has killed at least 150,000 people in Yemen since 2015. An illegal blockade by Saudi Arabia has also led to shortages of food and other essentials. Yemen is a country of 33 million people and already one of the poorest countries in the world.

Houthi leadership claims the merchants did not consult with local authorities when organizing the event and have arrested two of them.

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