I had another Executed Today entry posted, this time out of Botswana: Kedisaletse Tsobane, who was hanged on September 19, 2008. He had killed his ten-year-old illegitimate daughter, supposedly to get out of paying child support. But the judges aren’t sure that’s the real reason he did it, because
a) Tsobane had not paid any child support at all since the girl’s birth, and no one seemed to be pressing him particularly hard to start doing so.
b) Even if he was under pressure to start making payments, he was only obligated to pay the equivalent of $4 a month, and I calculated that his total debt was only $480. Tsobane could afford to pay this. Botswana is one of the most prosperous nations in Africa and has a per capita income of nearly $18,000 annually.
So, although Tsobane’s actions were clear enough, and he confessed, the case is still a bit of a head-scratcher.
I did not get picked to serve on the jury. I have not had the world’s greatest week; my bipolar disorder has been kicking my butt and I’ve been having suicidal thoughts and stuff, to the extent that the people at my psychiatric clinic thought it might be best if I went to spend some time with Dad. He can stay with me and keep me safe, he’s a calming influence, and Mom got all the sharp knives in the divorce settlement.
I saw my psychiatrist, Dr. Bruno, yesterday. He’s taken me off that medication that’s making me fat and put me on another drug that doesn’t make you fat, and which might improve my mental state as well. We’ll see.
I returned to Michael that same day. We had missed each other a lot and it was so good to see him. I have been doing some behind-the-scenes Charley Project work today. Updates will resume tomorrow.
I’ve got another Executed Today entry running today: Youssouf Ali. the first (of two) to be executed in the African island nation of Comoros. Ali had murdered a pregnant woman and was shot on this day 21 years ago.
I’ve also got another Executed Today entry from yesterday: Annice, a slave, who was hanged for killing five slave children — all of them her master’s property, at least two of them her own offspring — in the ironically named Liberty, Missouri in 1828.
And now I’m going to bed.
Yeah, I meant to start updating Charley again on Sunday and that didn’t happen. I was a lot more tired from that trip than I thought, and it kind of flipped my sleep schedule around as well. I don’t use my computer much if at all after about nine o’clock p.m. because Michael gets home from work then.
Was going to update yesterday after going to my therapy appointment. I would have gotten home at five p.m., but due to unforeseen circumstances I didn’t make it back home till seven, then Michael arrived home an hour early from work.
Anyway, the missing person of the week is Arturo Flores Vasquez, who disappeared from the border town of San Ysidro, California in 1998, the day before his birthday. (I ought to do a list of people who disappeared on or very close to their birthdays. Sofia Juarez is another that comes to mind.)
And I had another Executed Today entry that ran yesterday: Edward Hogsden, hanged in 1831. Another child abuse case, although it was sexual abuse in this case. It’s a terrible story, almost as bad as the last one.
Although it was a very very very long drive there and back — about thirty hours altogether — I am very glad I went to Massachusetts. It was a lovely memorial and the Cormier family was honored and delighted by my presence. I think I’ve made some new friends. They are very good people.
I arrived home in at 5:30 a.m. Saturday. Hopefully later today I can resume my work. In the meantime I’ve got an Executed Today entry for you: the 1909 hanging of Richard Justin. This story is a troubling one, morally speaking, because although I don’t believe Richard Justin was guilty of the crime he was accused of, I have a hard time calling this a miscarriage of justice. He may not have been a murderer but he was an evil man and frankly he deserved what he got in my opinion.
I would hope that if this happened in modern society Richard Justin could have been charged with the myriad of crimes he was actually guilty of and gotten a long sentence.
Thoughts on this case, anyone?
This week’s featured missing person is Lavorn Frye, a twenty-year-old man who disappeared from Blytheville, Arkansas on September 30, 1991. Unfortunately, I don’t have anything more to report on his case.
I have another Executed Today entry that ran today: Sheyna Gram and the Jews of Preiļi. Preiļi being a small Latvian town whose Jewish population was almost entirely wiped out on this day in 1941. Sheyna Gram was a sixteen-year-old girl who kept a diary from the day of the German invasion of the Soviet Union until her death.
Unfortunately I’m really not doing very well at the moment. The last week or so has kicked my butt and I’m barely functioning. I’m sorry.
I had an ET entry posted today for three boys who were hanged in Ohio on this day in 1880: George Mann, Gustave Ohr and John Sammett. They were between the ages of fifteen years and eighteen years plus one day when they died. Mann and Ohr had run away from home and were riding the rails when they hooked up with a fellow tramp, robbed and killed him. Sammett had robbed a store with another boy who agreed to turn state’s evidence against him. Sammett shot and killed him to prevent him from testifying.
I noted that Mann and Ohr’s gallows ballads were suspiciously similar to the ballad published by another murderer whom I wrote about on Executed Today, Christopher Rafferty, who was hanged in 1874. And Rafferty’s ballad in turn appears to have been plagiarized from the 1858 ballad for James Rogers.