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Should A Mentally Ill Cold-Blooded Murderer Receive the Death Penalty?

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So here we are; another week and there’s hardly any mention of Anna Brown. Nope, no mention of how she died in a jail cell thirty minutes after being dragged from a hospital emergency room for simply attempting to seek medical attention.

Nope, no mention of the fact that he was a single mother of two. Nor any mention of her having her children taken away after losing her job. Nope, not even any mention of her dying of blood clots in her lungs after complaining to police that she was having a hard time trying to breathe. As I pointed out recently, Anna Brown was not only homeless, she was a mental patient as well. To some, maybe this disqualifies her as being human and deserving of justice. But maybe this explains the subsequent silence since her death. Anyway, irrelevant fight for justice aside, meet Angela Simpson:

Mental health is no laughing matter, and the following is yet another example of just how: 1) the fastest growing prison population is made up of women, and 2) how prisons are filled with mentally ill individuals who would have been better served with the access to proper and affordable care prior to incarceration. But, there’s no profit in a cure; so, more prisons are built so that “normal” people can sleep better at night. In the case of Angela Simpson above, she was sentenced last week by Maricopa County judge, Paul McMurdie to life in prison plus 14 years.

Now, in the minds of many, Simpson deserves to be sentenced to death as punishment just on the strength of how heinously she murdered Terry Neely – a man confined to a wheelchair. My debate isn’t whether she deserves to be put to death. A debate we can have — like so many are having — in the comment section if you like. But before we do, at least check out her jail-house interview after sentencing was handed down for the brutal torture and murder of a man in a wheelchair for snitching:

Oh, if you’re not convinced that this woman is truly mentally ill, be sure to watch part two of the interview below. Now, if you do agree that she was in fact mentally ill, do you believe that it should serve as disqualification from her (or anyone) receiving a death penalty sentence?

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Written by:

Published on: April 9, 2012

Filled Under: Culture, Justice

Views: 4638

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  • http://www.theurbanpolitico.com Grand_Central

    It’s quite disturbing to me that mental illness continues to get the cold shoulder/blind eye in the US. I can only speak as an outsider with a conscience, who needs to be able to sleep at night – no person who is mentally ill should receive the death penalty. Yes, I understand that this woman committed a crime and took away a loved one. I also, don’t know what that feels like and understand that an anger would come over me, if anyone close to me were murdered, but we have to draw a line somewhere. 

    Individuals who are mentally ill need to be diagnosed and treated early on, so we don’t end up at the end of the line with a crime like murder committed. 

    • Vespasian

      Some would argue that killing innocent human beings is sick, in which case mentally disturbed murderers can be deemed sick in the head, mentally deranged, and/or mentally ill.

      To many, allowing murderers (those who are severely disturbed to the point of killing others and having no regard for human life) to live demonstrates an abject disregard for human life that is not unlike the disregard shown by the murderers, themselves.

      Allowing a butcher like Angela Simpson to live, an incurably deranged woman who continues to celebrate the fact that she tortured, mutilated and killed an innocent man in a wheelchair who never harmed her or anyone else, is the worst kind of indifference for human life that I can imagine. It boggles my mind to think that a demented individual who has a pathological need to torture and kill innocent people, especially police officers and police informants, would be permitted to live. While I do not believe that Angela Simpson should be made to suffer, defending her life by citing that she suffers from a mental illness and is therefore not responsible for her actions is outrageous in the extreme. The issue at hand is NOT her mental health, but rather, her ACTIONS.

      If you truly believe that Angela Simpson is being treated unfairly and that she should be permitted to live because a diagnosis of mental illness implies that she is less responsible for her actions than someone who enjoys better mental health, than I strongly urge you to have your own mental health evaluated by a qualified professional.

      • http://www.theurbanpolitico.com Grand_Central

        I probably should have been a bit more thorough in my comments. I was stating that mental illness starts from a beginning. I believe that as a nation we do a poor job of helping people suffering from mental illness, early on. So when Angela Simpson was a young woman, I am pretty sure that her mental illness was clear and apparent, but never addressed. That’s where I want us to come in and do something, not allow it to get so bad that she commits this heinous crime and we turn around and kill her for it. Now yes, her mental illness is so far gone that there isn’t much that can be done. However, I don’t support the death penalty and can’t do so for someone who is as seriously mentally ill as Simpson. I am not defending her life and I wouldn’t say she is being treated unfairly. 

  • Dorian Mode

    Mental illness my ass, LOL, she’s got to go, Thank God we got prisons, and the Death Penalty 

  • Timothy Eure

    The answer is: NO. The US Constitution stipulates that individuals must be competent to stand trial and also must understand the charges against them. There’s a reason why that language part of our legal system. 

  • Saviour complex

    Having watched the various Simpson interviews numerous times and read any articles I found, I’ve got a different theory:.

    Yes she’s had a mental disorder for a long time, possibly schizophrenia or schizoaffective, and she’s on an antipsychotics probably, and probably done illlegal drugs often too. Something happened to her from age 10, possibly abuse.

    Although she appears to respond quickly to the questions, nothing she says really adds up cross-referenced, in fact it’s often opposites E.g.

    She disagrees with the state trying to kill her. Err no she thinks she should have got the death penalty..

    She’s ok going to jail to be with ‘family’ other prisoners. Err, has four children and too upset to talk about. Apparently also has mother on outside.

    The victim snitched on a righteous person years ago. Err, he snitched on a bunch of people. Err, wasn’t anyone she knew. Err, police say he wans’t an informant at all.

    The victim was ‘wheelchair-bound’ according to all reports, a big old electric thing. Err she claims he could walk fine and she walked him up stairs to the apartment.

    How long did she beat/torture him for? Half an hour to 45 minutes. Errr, three days.

    The others accused of the murder & armed robbery – she once had a bond with them. Err she should have killed one of them. They weren’t present at the crimes….err they’ve been convicted though and they implicated her, but err she was alone.

    So….
    I’m not sure she actually did this crime. It is well establishedthat police can and do manipulate people into confessions and accept them without proper basis (incl. Maritoba country detectives & prosecutors in the past despite warnings). And that can include
    actually inducing false memories, including by feeding facts of the case thus contaminating the ‘confession’. And for example by telling people they
    failed a lie detector (regardless) so they must have done it, someone
    witnessed them so they must have, get them sleep deprived, hungry,
    doubting their own memories, knowing he only way to make it stop is to
    construct a confession. And of coures all this is easier with someone suggestible and possibly has had delusions/hallucinations anyway.

    But I think part of her knows it doesn’t make sense, and she’s kinda indicating that, Sometimes by opposites, or sarcasm, or clearly wrong ‘facts’. Sometimes by really offering no explanation, as re. the torture itself (obviously it not necessary). I think her answers about how she wouldn’t kill someone of the same race, may be telling about the real killers, in an opposite kind of way, This is a brief and confusing police account of what led them to the suspects http://northcentralnews.net/content/view/1461/ (Dec 6 should = Aug 6 I believe). I think she “refused” to give up the armed robbery names because SHE DIDNT KNOW. She’s then been implicated by others seeking plea deals or to shift blame from themselves. Confusing mention of white supremacists. They interviewed the apartment manager, Bill Rainwater, several times but he accused Simpson. But it was his car caught on video camera, but he claimed he’d lent it to her and then she/Macfarland threatened him so he hadn’t told police. Sounds like BS, right?

    Interesitng link to the Anna Brown case….shame.

    • Saviour complex

      Meant to type Maricopa County. Plenty on their ongoing habit of inducing false confessions, here’s one which points out that in a notorious case they: “saw evidence of guilt rather than symptoms of mental illness as they coerced a confession out of a man on his way to see his psychiatrist” and “It’s not always the confessor who did the deed; sometimes it’s the accuser.” http://www.law.arizona.edu/news/pdf/www%20rorotoko%20intvw%20and%20review.pdf

  • Office

    I wrote an op-ed for Wall St. journal where I laid out what should be done for mentally ill vis a vis insanity defense and NGRI http://mentalillnesspolicy.org/NGRI/not-guilty-reason-insanity.html

  • Saviour complex
    • http://rippdemup.com/ RiPPa

      Thanks for sharing!

  • Reggie

    Clearly that bitch is crazy.  I think I used to date her in college.

    Put her down………

  • Vespasian

    This woman has a severe mental illness for which we have no cure. As long as she lives, the lives of those around her will be in jeopardy. While I wish her no discomfort or harm, it seems to me that the most humane treatment in her case would have been the death penalty much earlier in her incarceration. (She’s been imprisoned for years now, bragging all the while about the atrocities she has committed, and maintaining that she deems her work — torturing and killing others — is both thrilling and rewarding.

    Her soul is in the hands of God — and I believe retribution should be left to Him.

    • Kevin W.

      I agree. And this is coming from someone who has known Angela Maria Elizabeth Simpson since the early 1990’s. I’ve been out of contact with her for over a decade, so I don’t know first hand what led her to become the person who tortured and murdered Terry Neely, but as a teenager her family and others tried to get her the best help available in Indiana. Angela learned to play the system and claimed to have multiple personality syndrome to explain her more bizarre behaviors. But the truth is that she enjoyed hurting others, even at a young age. Every time I’d see her she’d have a new pet (usually a cat) and you’d hear stories from her brothers or sister about what she’d do to her pets (one incident involved a microvave oven). Most felt that her problem was beyond a mental illness that could be treated with therapy and drugs…she was just plain evil.

      As with most young people, I thought I could make a difference and help her get her head straight or at least encourage her to get the help she needed. Instead she’d run away from home and shack up with a deranged vietnam veteran named Larry Latham, who also sold drugs and would get high with Angela. Angela loved the noteriety she had in the small town of Columbus, Indiana, for being a wild unpredictable (her words) bitch, and she loved to see others get into serious trouble for her actions. Once I realized that she was devoid of a conscience, I cut all ties with her.

      Knowing Angela, she’s enjoying all the attention she’s getting. Her incarceration is her very own Academy Award. She feels that she accomplished something great. Lord have mercy on her soul, if she has one.

  • Brenda Norris

    The problem is that many mentally ill people are able to determine right from wrong. Mental illness, is not of itself, an excuse to commit a crime. I spent a year as an intern in a psychiatric hospital in Toronto, Canada. I worked on the secure unit with severely impaired patients, some of whom had, indeed, been found not criminally responsible for various crimes. Nevertheless, there were many others who were able to ascertain the difference between right and wrong, and it would be a disservice to the severely ill patients if mental illness was used as a blanket excuse for everyone to commit crimes.