[Pnews] Omaha 2 - Edward Poindexter disputes Nebraska Governor's claim about commutation request

Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Sun Jan 31 17:37:05 EST 2016


  Edward Poindexter disputes Nebraska Governor's claim about commutation

January 30, 2016 <http://www.examiner.com/topic/ed-poindexter>

Edward Poindexter <http://www.examiner.com/topic/ed-poindexter>, serving 
a life sentence following a controversial, COINTELPRO 
<http://www.examiner.com/topic/cointelpro>-tainted trial for the August 
17, 1970 murder of an Omaha policeman, disputes the charge he has not 
asked for reconsideration of his case.

Spokeswoman Sonya Fauver, with the Governor's office, responded to 
justice advocate Sandy Shevack on Jan. 6, thatPoindexter has to ask for 
action on his case 
Shevack had written to Governor Pete Ricketts seeking compassionate 
release for Poindexter and his co-defendantMondo we Langa 
<http://www.examiner.com/topic/mondo-we-langa>, formerly David Rice. 
Poindexter suffers from diabetes, hypertension, and complications from 
neuropathy. Fauver wrote to Shevack in an email message, “As of to date, 
Mr. Rice and Mr. Poindexter have not submitted an application to the 
Nebraska Board of Pardons requesting a commutation of their sentences.”

Ed Poindexter <http://www.examiner.com/topic/ed-poindexter> and Mondo we 
Langa were targets of J. Edgar Hoover's clandestine COINTELPRO 
counterintelligence operation at the Federal Bureau of Investigation. 
The two men, leaders of Omaha's Black Panther affiliated National 
Committee to Combat Fascism, were marked for prosecution by Paul Young, 
the Special Agent in Charge of the Omaha FBI office. Young requested, 
with Hoover's approval, the FBI Laboratory withhold a report on the 
identity of the anonymous 911 caller that lured Patrolman Larry Minard, 
Sr. to his bombing death. The jury that convicted the “Omaha Two 
<http://crimemagazine.com/j-edgar-hoover-and-framing-omaha-two>” never 
got to hear the recorded voice of Minard's killer.

In a letter to an Omaha supporter, Poindexter disputed the statement he 
had not requested a commutation. Poindexter wrote, “I requested a 
commutation of my sentence in 1987 and 1993 to no avail. It's on record.”

The Nebraska Supreme Court has verified that Poindexter applied for 
commutation from the Board of Pardons, not once but twice: “The record 
shows that the Nebraska Board of Parole has denied Poindexter parole 
several times. The record also shows that the Board of Pardons has 
denied Poindexter a commutation hearing on at least two occasions, March 
1987 and May 1993.”

Poindexter appealed the Board of Pardons denials of a commuted sentence 
for Parole Board consideration to the Nebraska Supreme Court, which, in 
2008, also denied Poindexter a chance at parole. “The Board of Pardons 
has the unfettered discretion to grant or deny a commutation of a 
lawfully imposed sentence for any reason or for no reason at 
all....Because Poindexter has not yet received a commutation of his 
sentence to a term of years, he is not yet eligible for parole.”

“We conclude that under both the statutes in place when Poindexter 
committed his crime and the current statutes, Poindexter is not eligible 
for parole until the Board of Pardons commutes his life sentence to a 
term of years. We further conclude that Poindexter did not have a 
liberty interest in having his sentence commuted.”

Poindexter, who has exhausted his appeal rights seeking release, 
continues to maintain his innocence in Minard's death. Poindexter, along 
with Mondo we Langa, say they are victims of a wrongful conviction. 
Prior to Paul Young's request to withhold a laboratory report, Young had 
carried out two other COINTELPRO misdeeds against Poindexter.

Poindexter was accused in a bogus letter to the /Omaha Star/ of 
pocketing bail money. A second bogus letter to Black Panther 
headquarters accused Poindexter of leaking to “Whitey's newspaper,” the 
/Omaha World Herald. /Anonymous phone calls to selected people by FBI 
agents followed the false letters. COINTELPRO was unknown at the time of 
the trial and the jury had no idea Poindexter was the victim of FBI 
dirty tricks.

Poindexter must now decide if Governor Pete Ricketts is willing to 
consider examining Poindeter's case for wrongful conviction or if the 
statement about application for commutation would merely lead to another 
exercise in futility like the two earlier requests. A 1982 letter from 
the Nebraska Department of Corrections to Robert Bartle, then 
Poindexter's attorney, contains an explanation why some lifers get 
parole and others, like Poindexter, do not. Superintendent Gary Grammer 
wrote the Nebraska Board of Parole informed him that “eligibility for a 
commutation of a life sentence is that there are no written guidelines 
for eligibility.”

Poindexter responds to the Parole Board statement with a question. “If 
there were no guidelines for eligibility, how can they say I am required 
to have a commutation?”

Ed Poindexter is serving life without parole, even though he was never 
given such a sentence. Nebraska has yet to consider federal tampering 
with Poindexter's trial under COINTELPRO directives. Governor Ricketts 
was not then in office and had no role in Poindexter's prosecution. 
Ricketts could assert “states rights” and decide at a commutation 
hearing to review federal actions undertaken against Poindexter in 
Nebraska that were contrary to justice.

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