- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 19, 2007


Marine convicted of some Iraq crimes

CAMP PENDLETON — A military jury yesterday convicted a Marine of kidnapping and conspiring to murder an Iraqi man in a bungled attempt to abduct and kill an insurgent suspect in Hamdania.

Cpl. Trent Thomas was acquitted of premeditated murder, making a false official statement, housebreaking and larceny.

Thomas, 25, was the first of seven Marines and a Navy corpsman to go to trial in the killing, which squad members tried to cover up by planting a gun near the victim after he was fatally shot in a ditch.

Thomas had faced a mandatory sentence of life in prison if convicted of premeditated murder. He still could get a life sentence for his convictions, but there is no minimum sentence, defense attorney Victor Kelley said.

Mr. Kelley said he was “extremely pleased that the members found [his client] not guilty of premeditated murder.”

A sentencing hearing was scheduled to begin today.


Governor resumes lethal injections

TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Charlie Crist signed his first death warrant yesterday, ending a temporary halt on lethal injections that had been imposed after a botched execution last year.

Mark Dean Schwab, a convicted child killer, is scheduled to be executed Nov. 15, said Mr. Crist, a Republican. In signing the warrant, the governor said he was confident that lethal injections could proceed in line with constitutional bans on cruel and unusual punishment.

In December, Gov. Jeb Bush suspended all Florida executions after a medical examiner determined that prison officials had botched the insertion of the needles when a convicted killer was put to death. Angel Nieves Diaz’s execution took 34 minutes — twice as long as usual — and required a rare second dose of lethal chemicals.


3 killed, 1 injured in domestic incident

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