Ray Krone, 100th Death Row Exoneree, Speaks At Lee Tuesday

Friday, April 5, 2013

Ray Krone, the nation’s 100th death row exoneree, will share his story of being convicted of and sentenced to death for a crime he didn’t commit, on Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the Rose Lecture Hall (EDU 114) at Lee University.  

Rev. Stacy Rector, director of Tennesseans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, will also reflect on the problems with Tennessee’s current death penalty system that lead to the possibility of wrongful convictions. This event is co-sponsored by Lee University’s Sociology Club, Tennesseans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, and Witness to Innocence.

Mr. Krone was an Air Force sergeant and later a mail carrier before finding himself on Arizona’s death row for the 1991 murder of Kim Ancona. The case against him was based largely on circumstantial evidence and the testimony of an “expert” witness who claimed bite marks found on the victim matched Mr. Krone’s teeth. In 1992, he was sentenced to death. He was granted a retrial in 1994 only to be convicted again because of the same evidence. In 2002, Mr. Krone became the 100th person exonerated when a court found that DNA at the murder scene pointed to another man, Kenneth Phillips.

Mr. Krone currently serves as the director of Membership and Training at Witness to Innocence, the nation’s only organization composed of, by, and for exonerated death row survivors and their loved ones. Mr. Krone has also recently moved to Tennessee. He devotes his life to improving the criminal justice system that failed him by speaking to hundreds of groups, including numerous universities and law schools across the country, as well as to state legislatures and governmental bodies in England, Sweden, Italy and France. He has been featured in publications and on many radio and television programs, including People and Parade magazines, USA Today, the Los Angeles Times and Good Morning America.

“I would not trust the state to execute a person for committing a crime against another person,” Mr. Krone says. “I know how the system works.  It’s not about justice or fairness or equality.  Any chance I can, whether I start with one or two people or a whole auditorium filled with people, I’ll tell them what happened to me. Because if it happened to me, it can happen to anyone.”

In 2011, Gussie Vann became Tennessee’s third death row exoneree when all charges against him for the 1992 murder of his daughter were dropped. Mr. Vann joins Paul House and Michael McCormick, both who fought their wrongful convictions in Tennessee for over 20 years, before new evidence—including DNA—finally led to their release from death row.  Rev. Rector states, “Since the risk of executing an innocent person was one of the reasons that members of the Maryland legislature cited when they recently voted to repeal Maryland’s death penalty, this opportunity for Tennesseans to hear Krone’s story is timelier that ever.”


Augustine Named Recipient Of Lee’s Excellence In Scholarship Award

Dr. Daniela C. Augustine, associate professor of theological ethics, has been named as the recipient of Lee University’s 2016 Excellence in Scholarship Award. The winner of this award is chosen each year by the Faculty Committee on Research and Scholarship. Lee President Dr. Paul Conn officially recognized Dr. Augustine for this award during spring commencement earlier this ... (click for more)

East Ridge High School Unveils New Uniforms At McDonald's Fundraiser

The East Ridge High School football team will be sporting new uniforms this season thanks to a community supported fundraiser hosted by the Ringgold Road McDonald’s restaurant.      The McDonald’s parking lot, turned fundraising headquarters, played host to the team as they waved signs and asked McDonald’s customers for donations. McDonald’s is the sponsor of ... (click for more)

CBL & Associates Stockholder Accuses Chattanooga-Based Mall Owner Of Security Fraud; CBL Denies Any Wrongdoing

A stockholder of CBL & Associates is suing the Chattanooga-based mall owner in Chattanooga Federal Court, claiming its officials artificially inflated the value of the company's stock. Tommy French, of Baton Rouge, La., brought the action against CBL, President Stephen Lebovitz and Vice President Farzana Mitchell. He claims that CBL officials made false and misleading ... (click for more)

Carmody Found Guilty Of First-Degree Felony Murder; Sentenced To Life In Prison

Patrick Carmody was sentenced to life in prison after being found guilty of first-degree felony murder and especially aggravated robbery in Judge Barry Steelman’s courtroom on Friday. He was charged with the slaying of 21-year-old Chance LeCroy on Sept. 9, 2010. The state’s account of the incident claimed that Carmody, Ronald Pittman, and Billy Bob Partin traveled ... (click for more)

Case Handled Like Any Other? - And Response

It is interesting that Chief Fletcher would deem the handling of the Mayor's encounter as typical or normal. Is the Chief asking the public to believe that all misdemeanor domestic violence arrests include a 4-hour taped interrogation, and delayed reporting after a visit to the Chief’s house. Of course, we believe that Chief Fletcher. April Eidson * * *  I ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Best Speech This Year

Just 24 hours after Donovan Livingston gave The Student’s Speech at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education convocation on Wednesday, it had been viewed over 3 million times and shared 75,000 times on Facebook. It is already considered, far and away, as the freshest view on race and education in ages and its viral journey is burning across the Internet. His talk was ... (click for more)