Misleading Headline

RECEIVED Thu., Jan. 26, 2017

Dear Editor,
    I'm utterly opposed to any government being given the power to execute citizens, but the headline in your Greg Abbott Death Watch column, "A Death Sentence for $1.25," [News, Jan. 27] is wildly misleading.
    Here's the actual reason in the article as to why John Henry Ramirez is scheduled to be executed on Feb. 2: "Ramirez attacked the store clerk with one accomplice, beating him, and stabbing him 29 times."
    I assume you'd like to portray Governor Abbott as a heartless bastard who kills people for petty crimes such as stealing pocket change, but next time, could you try to come up with a more nuanced and accurate headline, such as "A Death Sentence for Murdering an Innocent Citizen by Stabbing Him 29 Times”? If you would then like to make the case that a coldblooded execution sanctioned by the governor, rather than life in prison without parole, is arguably just as horrifying and merciless as the stabbing – then you'd be making a fair and reasoned argument that I could agree with.
Jim Henshaw
   [News Editor Chase Hoffberger responds: Murder is only punishable by death in Texas if the assailant is convicted of capital murder. There are a number of statutes in Texas that raise the level of murder to capital. Ramirez was indicted on capital murder charges because he was believed to have committed a robbery during the killing. At the conclusion of his trial, he was found to have robbed Pedro Castro of $1.25. Without that detail, he would not have been sentenced to death.]
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