Lee Davis: Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Case Of Woman Who Poisoned Her Best Friend

Tuesday, January 29, 2013 - by Lee Davis
Lee Davis
Lee Davis
On Friday the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal by a woman convicted under a federal law that was meant to curb the existence of chemical weapons. The case is a convoluted one and involves the woman admitting she attempted to poison a former friend who she found out had an affair with her husband.

The law at issue in the case was enacted in 1998 and banned the use of chemical weapons for anything other than a “peaceful purpose.” The law developed from an international chemical weapons convention that was signed in 1993. The goal of the convention was to prevent terrorists from obtaining dangerous weapons of mass destruction.

The woman at the center of this sordid tale, Carol Anne Bond, was a microbiologist who previously worked with a major chemical company, Rohm and Haas.
After the police launched an investigation, she admitted to trying to poison her former best friend after learning that the woman had become pregnant by Ms. Bond’s husband.

Ms. Bond took chemicals from Rohm and Haas and spread them on the friend’s mailbox, car doors and house doorknobs over the span of nearly six months. Though cases like this are normally handled by local prosecutors as traditional criminal cases, Ms. Bond was prosecuted under the federal chemical weapons law.

The case presents an unusual opportunity for the justices to consider what to do when Congress’ power to implement international treaties into American law conflicts with the 10th Amendment limits on federal power. Ms. Bond, a Pennsylvanian, was sentenced to six years in prison after pleading guilty. She’s since appealed saying that use of the federal law invaded the powers given to Pennsylvania and other states under the 10th Amendment.

Earlier last year Ms. Bond’s case was heard by the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals which found that her conviction was constitutional. Though the court upheld her previous conviction, it did go out of its way to point out that the federal chemical weapons law turned each kitchen cupboard and cleaning cabinet into a potential chemical weapons cache.

Ms. Bond, who’s being represented by former Solicitor General Paul Clement, says that the federal government exceeded its authority by criminalizing what was local conduct when it implemented the chemical weapons treaty. The government disagrees, saying that Congress has authority under the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause to enact the law as it did.

Read: “U.S. Supreme Court Will Reconsider Case Of Woman Who Tried To Poison Romantic Rival,” by Robert Barnes, published at WashingtonPost.com.

(Lee Davis is a Chattanooga attorney who can be reached at lee@davis-hoss.com or at 266-0605.)


Unemployment Rate Decreases In 86 of 95 Counties

County unemployment rates for March, released today, show the rate decreased in 86 counties, increased in four, and remained the same in five. Specific county information for March is available on the Internet; enter http://www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/labor_figures/March_Laborestimates.pdf . Davidson County had the state’s lowest major metropolitan rate of 5.5 percent in March, down ... (click for more)

Natalie Roy Joins Full Media's Chattanooga Office

Internet marketing and website development company, Full Media, recently hired Natalie Roy as an Internet marketing analyst in the company’s Chattanooga office. Ms. Roy joins Full Media with an extensive background in public relations and marketing. A Chattanooga native, she is dedicated to the community and growing businesses within it. “I care deeply about Chattanooga, so ... (click for more)

Berke Names Fred Fletcher, Of Austin, Tex., New Chattanooga Police Chief

Mayor Andy Berke announced on Thursday, Fred Fletcher of Austin, Tex., as his pick for Chattanooga Chief of Police. With 20 years of experience in law enforcement, Mr. Fletcher has served in an executive, command, or supervisory role for 12 years.  As commander in Region III of the Austin Police Department, Mr. Fletcher spearheaded community initiatives including a drug market ... (click for more)

Child, 23 Months, Found Dead In Crib With Fentanyl Patch On Back; Death Ruled Homicide

A 23-month-old Chattanooga boy has been found dead in his crib with a Fentanyl patch on his back. The death of Demarcus Bryant at 7655 Borris Dr. last month was ruled a homicide. An autopsy report says he died from "Fentanyl patch placed by someone else." Chattanooga Police are investigating. No one has yet been charged. The child was found face down in his crib. ... (click for more)

Use The Current Rail System Already In Place - And Response (2)

Why spend $20 million or more on an unproven system to run from the Southside of Chattanooga when we already have the beginnings of a system?  The question apparently has surfaced of why the Choo Choo City doesn't have a rail line. We do have a rail line with the Tennessee Valley RR Museum and their hardware. And they already make runs from the Southside to close to Enterprise ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UAW Voices In Detroit

Today we are going to eavesdrop on somewhat of an open conversation that was held far to the north after the United Auto Workers surprisingly dropped a legal challenge with the National Labor Relations Board in Chattanooga the first thing on Monday morning. The NLRB judge certified the VW workers’ February vote to turn away the UAW at Chattanooga’s Volkswagen manufacturing plant ... (click for more)