JOHN ALLEN MUHAMMED, who carried out a cross-country killing spree that resulted in 10 people being murdered, has had an execution date set for November.
Often ignored (as the article below does) is that Muhammed began his reign of terror with his wives, through a campaign of domestic violence and child custody harrassment and abduction (see article that follows the one below from 2006).
And totally hushed up is what a big hero Muhammed was to the fathers rights crowd back in 2002, who proclaimed him a "victim" of the courts and discrimination against daddies, and published all kinds of op-eds defending him.
Take Lowell Jaks, Alliance of Non-Custodial Parents Rights: Back in 2002, Mr. Jaks distributed newspaper articles to his organization's members noting the problems with child custody and child support that "angered" John Allen Muhammad, the now convicted Washington-area sniper. "Some guys kill themselves, some snap and go out and kill others," Mr. Jaks said back then. "You can dismiss them as crackpots, you can say we need more protection for women, but it's not going to take away the problem."
Or James Hayes of the Coalition of Fathers and Families, NY: "I read with interest the recent coverage of John Allen Muhammad and John Lee Malvo. In looking for causes people have been pointing to many areas and ultimately, how to prevent 'the next one'. The one area not reported in the popular media was the impact of family dissolution and fatherlessness on both, and the disenfranchisement of a father from his children and family."
Note that since 2002, research suggests that more and more fathers are getting the "joint custody" or "shared custody" that all the fathers rights people were agitating for back then. We were told that if we eliminated "fatherlessness," we'd eliminate the "anger" and subsequent violence.
Well, guess what? Read through Dastardly Dads, and you'll find all kinds of dads who had joint custody, shared custody, or even SOLE CUSTODY, and that didn't stop them from inflicting their "anger" on their children or the mothers of their children. It's time to put that lie to rest once and for all. Caving into the demands of violent criminals doesn't stop the violence. It just emboldens the criminals.
DC sniper mastermind's execution set for November
By DENA POTTER (AP) – 1 day ago
RICHMOND, Va. — A Virginia judge on Wednesday set a Nov. 10 execution date for John Allen Muhammad, mastermind of the 2002 sniper attacks in the Washington, D.C., area that left 10 dead.
Prince William County Circuit Judge Mary Grace O'Brien picked a Tuesday for the execution so that courts would be open the day before in case of any last-minute legal appeals.
Jonathan Sheldon, Muhammad's attorney, said Muhammad would appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court and ask Gov. Timothy M. Kaine for clemency.
Muhammad was sentenced to death for the slaying of Dean Meyers, who was shot at a Manassas gas station during a three-week killing spree in October 2002 that left 10 dead in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.
He and his teenage accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, were also suspected of shootings in several other states, including a killing in Louisiana and another in Alabama. Malvo is serving life in prison.
Meyers' brother, Robert Meyers of Perkiomenville, Pa., said the setting of an execution date has served as something of a "reality check" for a death sentence that was imposed more than five years ago.
"We're not bloodthirsty people. It's not like we can't wait for this to happen," he said in a phone interview. "But there's a debt to society. And it's been determined in the right way — not by vigilantism — that this is the action to be taken."
A federal appeals court last month rejected Muhammad's argument that prosecutors withheld critical evidence and that he never should have been allowed to act as his own attorney for a portion of his trial because he was too mentally impaired.
The attorney general's office declined to comment Wednesday.
Cheryll Witz said she wants to witness the execution personally. Her father, Jerry Taylor, was shot and killed by Malvo on a Tucson, Ariz., golf course in March 2002 at Muhammad's direction.
"It's definitely about justice," she said. "The death penalty is the only justice for him."
Associated Press Writer Matthew Barakat contributed to this report from McLean, Va.
Muhammad's Ex-Wife Speaks Of Abuse, Fears Sniper Sought Children, She Says
By Ernesto Londoño Washington Post Staff Writer Thursday, May 25, 2006
Never mind that her ex-husband is one of the most closely watched death row inmates in the country.
To this day, Mildred Muhammad never leaves home without the restraining order that bars sniper John Allen Muhammad from getting close to her and their three children.
"The only thing I know is he was coming to kill me," Mildred Muhammad said in an interview last weekend. "If he were to escape, I have that to show to say that he's not supposed to be near me."
Mildred Muhammad, 46, said she decided to speak publicly about her ex-husband because she feels prosecutors who have tried him in Virginia and Maryland have not thoroughly addressed what she believes his motive in the October 2002 shootings was: to kill her so he could recover his children.
Muhammad said in his opening statements in his current Montgomery County trial that he and Malvo roamed the Washington area -- during the terrifying three-week period when 10 people were slain and three injured -- looking for his three children, who were taken from him after he kidnapped them for 18 months.
"What would that mean technically?" his ex-wife asked rhetorically. "I would have to be removed."
Mildred Muhammad, who is now working at a family crisis center, is writing a memoir titled "Without a Beating Heart: Running from the DC Sniper -- My Ex-Husband."
Her publisher, Lloyd J. Jassin, requested that the interview be only 20 minutes and asked Mildred Muhammad to limit her disclosing of information about the memoir.
The book will underscore that thousands of women in abusive relationships have limited tools to protect themselves and fight back, Mildred Muhammad said.
"As we sit here, someone has called 911 for help," she said over coffee at Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe & Grill near Dupont Circle. "How many of those calls have come and gone unheard?"
She declined to say whether she still lives in the Washington area and would not answer questions about her children, who are now 16, 14 and 13.
Mildred Muhammad worked on a different book project last year and intended to go on a book tour this month to coincide with her husband's Montgomery trial. She backed out of that deal, according to Penny C. Sansevieri, chief executive of Author Marketing Experts Inc., which was promoting the book.
A news release issued when that book was in the works promised to reveal that Muhammad had threatened to kill his ex-wife and to "bring a city to its knees with terrorism." Mildred Muhammad declined this week to say what information would be in her new book.
She said that she doesn't hold Muhammad's accomplice, Lee Boyd Malvo, responsible for the shootings. Both men have been convicted in Virginia, and Malvo plans to plead guilty in Maryland.
"Lee is a victim of domestic abuse," she said.
Malvo, 21, said this week on the witness stand during Muhammad's trial that he had been "indoctrinated" by the older sniper.
Mildred and John Muhammad were married for 12 years. They separated in 2000. In an application for a restraining order filed in Tacoma, Wash., Mildred wrote: "I am afraid of John. He was a demolition expert in the military. He is behaving very, very irrational. Whenever he does talk with me he always says that he's going to destroy my life."
In an earlier application for a restraining order, she wrote that Muhammad had forced his way into their home to see their son, John Jr., who had been sick. The next day, Mildred Muhammad wrote, "John came over to inform me that he will not let me raise our children. His demeanor is such that it's a threat to me.''
After their marriage fell apart, Muhammad took the children to Antigua, where he met Malvo, a rudderless teenager who had been abandoned by his parents. Muhammad returned to the United States later with Malvo and his children. Muhammad moved to Washington state, where he lost custody of his children.
Shortly afterward, Muhammad told Malvo's mother -- who was then working illegally in Fort Myers, Fla. -- that Malvo would be better off with him because he could adopt him and legalize the teenager's immigration status, Malvo testified. Malvo's mother rejected the offer, but Malvo ran away to join Muhammad.
In the summer of 2002, Muhammad told Malvo that he intended to terrorize the Washington area -- where Mildred and the children were living -- by shooting dozens of people and later bombing school buses, schools and children's hospitals, according to Malvo's testimony.
Muhammad's ultimate plan was to take back his children and move to Canada to form a training compound for young homeless men who would expand his mission to several cities in the United States, Malvo said.
Mildred Muhammad said she has followed her ex-husband's trial closely.
"I think he's being arrogant," she said, of his decision to conduct his own defense. She said he likely chose to do so "to show how smart he is. Smart is as smart does."
Staff researcher Bobbye Pratt contributed to this report.