Feb 7, 2014

Woman executed in Texas for brutal torture/murder of impaired man

This meted out capital punishment sentence is Justice not revenge as some claim.

Vengefulness would involve inflicting the exact torturous death that she inflicted upon this poor mentally impaired man whose finger she cut off to steal his wedding ring --- that is nothing compared to the rest of the crime)

I am am outraged over this woman's crime and the sick greed that fueled it. And I feel that finally  I am reading about some form of justice being meted out albeit a go gently in the night methodology which this murderer robbed her victim from ever having himself. Hearing of her courtroom antics lock in the classic sociopath that always seem to be behind these sick pre meditated calculated murders.

Hearing the details of her execution humanizes her too much as far as I a concerned.

The emphasis should be on her victim and his family Their pain and torment. 

Thank God for this devoted prosecutor, there are not enough of them, particularly in the state of Connecticut, although we are by no means the only violent crime enabling state.

Suzanne Basso is scheduled to die for for the torture slaying of Louis “Buddy” Musso, a mentally impaired man near Houston more than 15 years ago. AP Photo: Texas Department of Criminal Justice Suzanne Basso is scheduled to die for for the torture slaying of Louis “Buddy” Musso, a mentally impaired man near Houston more than 15 years ago. AP 1 day ago | By Michael Graczyk of Associated Press share 2.6k tweet 53 email The 59-year-old Basso was sentenced to die for the 1998 slaying of 59-year-old Louis "Buddy" Musso.

His battered and lacerated body was found in a ditch outside Houston. HUNTSVILLE, Texas — A woman convicted of torturing and killing a mentally impaired man she lured to Texas with the promise of marriage was put to death Wednesday evening in a rare executionof a female prisoner. The lethal injection of Suzanne Basso, 59, made the New York native only the 14th woman executed in the U.S. since the Supreme Court in 1976 allowed capital punishment to resume. Almost 1,400 men have been put to death during that time. Related: Grim milestone: Texas executes 500th inmate Before being put to death, Basso told a warden who stood near her, "No sir," when asked to make a final statement. She appeared to be holding back tears, then smiled at two friends watching through a window.

 She mouthed a brief word to them and nodded. As the lethal dose of pentobarbital took effect, Basso, dressed in a white prison uniform, began to snore. Her deep snoring became less audible and eventually stopped. She was pronounced dead at 6:26 p.m. CST, 11 minutes after the drug was administered. Basso was sentenced to die for the 1998 slaying of 59-year-old Louis "Buddy" Musso, whose battered and lacerated body, washed with bleach and scoured with a wire brush, was found in a ditch outside Houston. Prosecutors said Basso had made herself the beneficiary of Musso's insurance policies and took over his Social Security benefits after luring him from New Jersey.

The execution, the second this year in Texas, came about an hour after the Supreme Court rejected a last-day appeal from Basso's attorney who argued she was not mentally competent. Lower federal courts and state courts also refused to halt the punishment, upholding the findings of a state judge last month that Basso had a history of fabricating stories about herself, seeking attention and manipulating psychological tests. Leading up to her trial, Basso's court appearances were marked by claims of blindness and paralysis, and speech mimicking a little girl. "It was challenging, but I saw her for who she was," said Colleen Barnett, the former Harris County assistant district attorney who prosecuted Basso.

"I was determined I was not going to let her get away with it." Basso's attorney, Winston Cochran Jr., argued she suffered from delusions and that the state law governing competency was unconstitutionally flawed.

Her lawyer said a degenerative disease left her paralyzed, but Basso, who used a wheelchair, blamed her paralysis on a jail beating years ago. At a competency hearing two months ago, she testified from a hospital bed wheeled into a Houston courtroom and talked about a snake smuggled into a prison hospital in an attempt to kill her. But she acknowledged lying about her background, including that she was a triplet, worked in the New York governor's office and had a relationship with Nelson Rockefeller.

She originally was from the Albany and Schenectady areas of New York. Prosecutors said Musso was living in New Jersey when he met either Basso or her son at a church carnival, then moved to Jacinto City, east of Houston, with an offer of marriage. Evidence showed Basso was already married but took over Musso's benefits and insurance. An autopsy showed Musso had several broken bones, including a skull fracture and 14 broken ribs. His back was covered with cigarette burns, and bruises were found all over his body.

Basso became a suspect after reporting Musso missing following the discovery of his body. Five others also were convicted, including Basso's son, but prosecutors only sought the death penalty for Basso. "Suzanne ran the show for sure. ... She was the one in charge. She directed them. She wanted the money," Barnett said. "She's a heinous killer."

Among witnesses testifying at Basso's punishment trial was her daughter, who told of emotional, physical and sexual abuse at the hands of her mother. About 60 women are on death row in the U.S., making up about 2 percent of the 3,100 condemned inmates. Texas, the nation's busiest death-penalty state, now has executed five women and 505 men. The last woman executed in Texas before Basso was Kimberly McCarthy, who was put to death last June for killing her neighbor near Dallas and cutting off the 71-year-old victim's finger to steal her wedding ring.


Feb 6, 2014

An Open Letter From Dylan Farrow re her childhood abuse

Below is a Blog Post as well as a copy of  Dylan Farrow's letter published in the New York Times regarding her childhood abuse  suffered at the hands of her infamous "father" Woody Allen.

After decades of silence, Dylan Farrow, the adopted daughter of actress and activist Mia Farrow and director Woody Allen, has stepped forward to publicly assert that Allen sexually assaulted her when she was 7 years old. The assault came after what she describes as a number of disturbing behaviors that sound like grooming, a term for the process predators use to initiate an abusive dynamic with victims, to encourage secrecy and test how much abuse they can get away with disguising as love. For instance, Dylan wrote of Allen putting his thumb in her mouth, of resting his head in her naked lap, and making her get under the covers with him while he was in his underwear.

In an open letter published on a New York Times blog, Dylan wrote of a childhood spent frightened and silent and hiding in small, dark spaces, under beds and in closets, trying to avoid her alleged assailant. “He always found me,” she wrote.

It’s a dangerous situation to turn a particular case into a metaphor for a typical case, but as so often happens when recognizable names publicly wrestle with contentious issues, the Farrow-Allen dynamic is now a divisive flashpoint. For many, Dylan has become a symbol—a stand-in speaking the rage of countless victims of childhood sexual abuse who never saw justice, while Allen’s the stand-in for every abuser who ever got away with it.

There are way too many people represented on both sides of that equation. Imagine any other violent crime where so few survivors saw justice. It’s not an accident, though. It is, in part, by design.
It’s obviously not my place to say if Woody Allen is guilty or not. But when the charge is child sex abuse, “he wasn’t convicted” hardly means “innocent.” Our criminal justice system may be based on the presumption of innocence in the absence of contrary evidence in court, it’s also built with laws designed to stop childhood sexual abuse victims from getting into a courtroom.

Historically, statutes of limitation (SOLs) on childhood sex abuse, the parameters for how long a victim has before criminal prosecution or a civil lawsuit, have been set so short that by the time an abused child becomes an adult, the option is gone.

Under Connecticut law, children assaulted in 1992, the same year that Dylan Farrow says she was abused by Allen, had seven years from the time of the assault, or two years after turning 18, whichever is shorter. (Farrow and Allen were in Connecticut at the time she says she was assaulted.)

A 7-year-old, as Farrow was, had until age 14 to pursue a court case.
How many 14-year-old kids do you know who would be able to not only recognize abuse that has been packaged as love, but be ready for the fallout?

Getting to that point is a psychologically and emotionally difficult process that often takes years—decades, even. In many cases, it’s simply logistically impossible for a survivor to pursue a legal case.

In 2002, Connecticut’s SOL had been extended, reflecting the trend across the country of dragging out, or even abolishing, statutes to reflect what we are learning about how survivors process trauma. (Check your state law here.)

We now know, for example, that childhood victims of sexual abuse often don’t inform authorities, or anyone, about their abuse for years, especially when the abuser is a well-respected authority figure or family member.

We know, too, that children most scared of the consequences of reporting their abuse sometimes deny or recant their story, and that doesn’t mean they’re lying.

A study that examined 250 cases of substantiated sexual abuse found that approximately 25 percent of the children recanted at some point, and the kids most likely to waver were the ones abused by a family member.

We also know that many victims don’t disclose childhood abuse at all until adulthood, when they first experience the tentacles of that monster reaching out to destroy relationships because they can’t trust, and destroy their bodies because they self-medicate with alcohol or drugs as they discover that commanding themselves to “get over it” doesn’t work, no matter how hard they try.

Sometimes it “clicks” after a triggering event, such as a friend’s revelation, or a big story like the Jerry Sandusky or Jimmy Savile case. Or, as Dylan wrote, when your assailant is so rich and famous and beloved that the world routinely stands up and claps for him at ceremonies that he doesn’t deign to attend—all after marrying your adopted sister.

Even though SOLs have been extending, they don’t apply retroactively, so they will most benefit future victims. In general, the law that existed during your abuse is the law that applies to your case. Just last August, for example, charges filed against a Connecticut school psychologist accused of sexually assaulting a middle-school boy were abruptly dismissed once the court learned the alleged rapes took place in 2000 and 2001, before the statute granted victims the right to come forward up to age 50.

In that case, as with all survivors who discover they’ve run down a clock they didn’t know was ticking, the boy has suffered because of both his assailant and the special interests that have consistently fought against extending SOLs.
Who would fight against justice in this way? Well, besides Hollywood’s elite, the Roman Catholic Church.

The reasons come with a lot of zeroes at the end: It’s no wonder, for example, that the Catholic Church has been fighting SOL reform in Pennsylvania, given the forthcoming civil suits from the sex abuse crisis and the fact that not one priest identified in the 2005 grand jury reporting investigating the Philadelphia archdiocese was prosecuted, all thanks to SOLs. SOLs helped Sandusky as well.
In fact, SOLs on child sex abuse seem to help everyone but the survivors.

All in all, the odds are so stacked against survivors that only 3 percent of rapists ever spend a day in jail. There is a heavy thumb on the scales of justice. It is well-documented. To trot out “but he wasn’t convicted” as definitive proof of innocence of child rape against the backdrop of this system amounts to willful ignorance, a cheap attempt to exploit what should be a sacred tenet of our legal system in an effort to dignify the rape culture myth that says victims are presumed to be lying until proven otherwise in a court of law—and by the way, good luck getting there.
Note from L

Dylan's letter and it's testimony, is as credible as can be. The details the nuances, the child's presumption that the abuse from her father was "normal" at first, not to mention all of her very specific tragic remembrances and the feelings that they wrenched from her , spell truth. Seeing your abuser adulated over and over is as invalidating and crushing as could possibly be. Until the crimes are public and the offender is pronounced as guilty or admits guilt it is extremely unlikely that healing will be possible.

We owe it to our children, ourselves and each other to educate and illuminate such serious matters. Our courts need to become more proactive and less tolerant of this brand of predator. Rule one professionals and many lay person alike  know enough about these crimes by now to recognize abused children and teenagers. Thus viable victims and survivors coming forth are to be believed  number one, thus validated. For it is the invalidation spurred on by the ostriches, beleaguered and cronies alike that tears at the soul most for any victim of crime who is denied justice, it reminds me of lawyers and courts  ultimately pinning rape crimes on the victim- thus sealing the abuse and victimizing this person again and again.

Ovetly viable Victims such as Dylan Farrow should be lauded for their strength in bringing their pain into the open forum in hopes of  preventing this same crime  from being perpetrated endlessly, due to other's discomfiture  apathy and more times than I can count - celebrity worship ( the same brand that enabled Mr. Orenthal J Simpson to utterly escape culpability for abusing his wife for years ultimately giving him a pass for two brutal murders.

An Open Letter From Dylan Farrow - NYTimes.com

Sioux Mother Rescues Abused Children, Faces Arrest For Keeping Abused Child From Divorced Father

Sioux Mother Rescues Abused Children, Faces Arrest - ICTMN.com

These " black eyes" aka raccoon eyes, are not what they first appear ie black eyes.

They are almost definitively the result of a head injury/ Traumatic brain injury formerly called concussion and possibly a basilar skull fracture as this type of fracture leaves ecchymosis (deep bruising) on the lids of the victims eyes. as well as possible bruising behind the ears. These fractures are one of the few that do not show well on Catscans nor MRI due to several bony prominences within the skull that obscure the necessary view of the base of the skull where the fracture occurred.

For this reason, learned Doctors will usually rely upon the patients symptomology when making the diagnosis of a basilar fracture.

In the photo above the blood has pooled around his eyes as his injured arteries swelled and slowed the passage of blood. This is almost always the result of multiple blows to a child's head.

Over the course of the next several days there will likely be swelling of the jaw area where the collected blood slowly moves down the victims face giving the appearance of a swollen jaw, this again, is completely misleading and many police officers social workers and even doctors and nurses are poorly trained to spot these subtleties.

This makes the act of evidence photo taking extremely important and officers again need to be trained that the bruising will get worse as the days pass, so getting a second or third set of digital photos of essential for medical evaluation when the case goes to court.

This story gets worse when we discover that this child is relegated to a wheelchair suffering from muscular dystrophy and severe autism.

The hospital ER doctors that attended to this battered  child were inept and grossly irresponsible in there simple ability and or willingness to diagnose obvious symptoms of what was clearly a severe assault upon a child's head/brain.

An assault that could have killed him.

There was no MRI or Cat scan performed which is standard fare for anyone who has symptoms like these, as well the hospital staff did not report the injuries which they claimed were impossible to discern the cause of because this pubescent victim was a special needs child --his language skills were impaired and he required a wheelchair for many years at that point.

When I read this story that I immediately wanted the responsibility and shame to fall on not only the actual perpetrators of this assault and others like it with the same child-- but moreover upon the multiple authorities and agencies who ultimately aided and abetted the man and woman who obviously abused a child that was unable to fight back, in even the most basic ways ie fending off blows,

The social services dept had been called into this divorced parent custody/ suspected abuse case multiple times and yet both children despite the mothers pleas and overt recorded physical evidence of abuse, allowed or in fact insisted, that the kids split custody with their father a man with a violent criminal record as well as his string of girlfriends, the latest appearing to be mutually culpable in two episodes of assaulting this child and their mother who never once was accused of harming either child and was incessant in her attempts to procure full custody in order to protect her child fro further harm or possibly death.

A quote by Voltaire comes to mind here as it does in so any cases where otherwise " good people turn their heads and take the easy route of inaction.

"'Evil exists when good men do nothing"

Ask ourselves: where are the law men and or women, the doctors and the child protective services who need to be held accountable for their inaction irresponsibility and apathy in this case --- and so many others like it?