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Schwarzenegger Denies Clemency to Stanley `Tookie` Williams
Aired December 12, 2005 - 20:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
NANCY GRACE, HOST: Tonight: Will the U.S. Supreme Court intervene and stop the execution of a four-time convicted killer, Stanley "Tookie" Williams? Only hours left before death by needle -- lethal injection -- set to go down in just hours, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger refusing clemency after Williams refused to apologize for the four brutal murders. Today, not even speaking his victims` names! And tonight, police brace for riots.
Also tonight: Two months since beauty queen-turned teacher Tara Grinstead vanished. A single new tip leads to a massive search.
Good evening, everybody. I`m Nancy Grace. I want to thank you for being with us tonight. Fifty-thee days since she vanished, new info on a tip line results in a massive search this week for beauty queen turned- teacher Tara Grinstead.
But first tonight, "Tookie" Williams, convicted in the brutal murders of four innocent people, right now just hours away from lethal injection in the California death chamber.. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger denies an emergency appeal for clemency, but will the ninth circuit or the U.S. Supreme Court grant a last-minute stay?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAN HANDZLIK, MEMBER OF WILLIAMS`S DEFENSE TEAM: Mr. Williams has stated that he didn`t do it and that he`s innocent. He`s said that for the past 25, 26 years. For him to undergo some sort of clemency conversion at the last minute and say, I did it, I`ve been kidding all these years, would, I think, demonstrate a tremendous lack of character on his part.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: I want to go straight out to investigative reporter Pat Lalama. She is standing by there at San Quentin. Pat, bring us up to date.
PAT LALAMA, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER: Well, the atmosphere is rather eerie, I have to tell you, now that the decision has finally been made, there`s no turning back. I mean, right behind me, that`s the place the last word comes from justice, and that word is death. We do know that he will receive the lethal injection, which is what he chose.
Oh, you should know this. (INAUDIBLE) just a few moments ago, Reverend Jesse Jackson came barreling through with an entourage, of course, you know, 10, 20, 30 cameramen and the reporters...
GRACE: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!~
LALAMA: ... following along...
GRACE: Wait! Wait! Pat, Jesse Jackson with a camera crew?
LALAMA: Yes. Right -- right -- no, no. Let me restate it, with camera crews following him in a pack. And it was quite the scene because it was, like, right before all the local news times were to begin, and he just -- in fact, he`s right over there, having an interview with someone. It kind of stirred up the crowd for a while. And of course, he supports Tookie Williams, and that brought the atmosphere up a bit. But other than that, behind me, the house of death, and it`s imminent.
GRACE: I want to go now to David Wohl, defense attorney, who will be witnessing the execution. Elizabeth (ph), do we have David yet? David will join us shortly. He is there at San Quentin.
In the meantime, to Jim Moret, chief correspondent with "Inside Edition," Jim Moret not just an on-air talent but a practicing lawyer, as well. Jim Moret, at this juncture, even now, just hours before the lethal injection, either the U.S. Supreme Court or the kooky ninth circuit could definitely intervene and stop the death penalty.
JIM MORET, "INSIDE EDITION": They could, except most people believe that the last and best chance for Tookie Williams was with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. And as you said, Arnold Schwarzenegger rejected the appeal for clemency.
And basically, the appeal was two-fold. One, the governor said he would not revisit the four convictions for murder, stating that the last 24 years, there have been exhaustive appeals and re-appeals and the court has not overturned those convictions. And two, Tookie Williams has stated that he didn`t do these killings, and the governor said, based upon the evidence, we have to take it as fact that you`re guilty, and the fact now that you`re saying you`re innocent means that there is no redemption, which was the basis for the appeal for clemency.
But you`re right, the ninth circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court could interject, but it`s highly unlikely that they will.
GRACE: OK, so you`re telling me that`s only in the movies? I disagree. You get one rogue Justice off the U.S. Supreme Court on the phone, they call the death chamber, boom, it`s all off.
MORET: You do like the sense of drama. And clearly, it would be that sense of drama here. And you`re right, you need...
GRACE: Well, Jim Moret, the man is about to get a lethal cocktail. You don`t think that`s dramatic?
MORET: Of course it`s dramatic. But let`s face it. There`s been 24 years of appeals here. You`ve had, Lora Owens, the stepmother of one of the victims, on here before. Think about the victims` families. Think about the long nightmare that they have endured. And Lora Owns has said to you and she`s said to me, when I talked to her, she said, What about this claim of mercy that my stepson asked for? What about the mercy that should have been shown to the three other victims? They didn`t get mercy. You`ve had 24 years. This is the end of the line. So it really is a basic difference in point of view here, Nancy.
GRACE: And speaking of Lora Owens, we will go to her in just one moment, her stepson, Albert Owens, gunned down, being forced to lay straight down as he was executed by Tookie Williams.
First to Karen Breslau. Karen is with "Newsweek," San Francisco`s bureau chief. She interviewed Tookie Williams. And it`s my understanding he would not even name the names of his victims. Is that true?
KAREN BRESLAU, "NEWSWEEK": Well, what happened -- our interview was by telephone last Friday, after he was already under some enhanced security measures, and so we spoke by phone. I asked him about 15 minutes into our interview if he would name those he was convicted of killing, and at that point, shortly after I asked that question, the call was terminated by the San Quentin simply because the time limit had expired.
I`m not sure if he was unable to hear me. He said, Pardon? What? And I repeated the question, and the phone line went dead.
GRACE: OK, question, Karen. Could he understand all of your other questions?
BRESLAU: Yes, he did.
GRACE: So it was just the question where you asked him could he even speak the names of the four innocent people that he didn`t hear!
BRESLAU: The line went dead at that point. And what was -- what happened on my end of the phone was that his advocate and publicist and friend, a woman named Barbara Becknell (ph), who was present with me in the room, became very angry about the question. I had asked her if she would reestablish the connection so that we could continue the interview, and her response was, What kind of question is that? There`s no way -- she used an expletive which I`ll spare you, but that there`s no way he could answer that question without, you know, finding himself in deeper trouble than he already is, and that she felt the question was racist. And at that point, the interview was terminated. Those were not his answers, those were hers.
GRACE: So that was his PR person?
GRACE: Stanley Tookie Williams has a PR person?
BRESLAU: He has a -- well, he obviously has a very large community of people outside of prison who have communicated on his behalf, you know, in this entire campaign. Barbara Becknell is a woman who met him in the `90s and worked with him on some of his books and...
GRACE: Was it a PR person? That`s all I want to know. Was it a PR person?
BRESLAU: Is she professionally a public relations person? I don`t know that she receives any money for this. I couldn`t say.
GRACE: Then why did we say she was the PR person -- she was the PR person?
BRESLAU: She has been arranging interviews on his behalf with him.
BRESLAU: So if you want to define her...
BRESLAU: ... as a PR person, that...
GRACE: Gotcha. Gotcha.
BRESLAU: ... probably is accurate.
GRACE: Take a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REV. JESSE JACKSON, RAINBOW/PUSH COALITION: To kill him is a way of making politicians look tough. It does not make it right, and it does not make any of us safer, not make any of us more secure.
The hopes of many will be dashed by this decision. But I did talk with Tookie for about 45 minutes. We did have prayer. He said he felt good. He has a sense of inner peace. He had been in the valleys and shadows of death before. He did not fear evil, did not fear hurt. The bullets have whizzed past his head before. And somehow, some way, he was going to hold onto his faith.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: In just hours, the execution of Stanley "Tookie" Williams set to go down, Williams convicted by a jury. After 24 years of appeals, the death penalty set to go down in the California death chamber there at San Quentin.
I keep hearing a lot the names Tookie Williams, Tookie Williams, but here`s some names you don`t hear so often. Twenty-six-year-old Albert Owens gunned down, face down in the floor. The man was working a second job, people, straight out of our U.S. military. He had a night job. He was sweeping the parking lot at a 7-Eleven when Williams forced him face down, shot him in the back, shot him multiple times, then later bragged about how Albert Owens, just 26 years old -- the noises he made after he was shot dead.
The name Yien I. Yang (ph), 67 years old, his wife, Sai Chai Yang (ph), 63 years old. They were motel innkeepers, their daughter who worked with them, Yi Chien Lin (ph), 43 years old. Four lives that we know of brutally snatched away. And for what? The Asian innkeepers, all three, lost their lives for $120 so Williams could buy angel dust, PCP.
Right now to Lora Owens. She is the stepmother of Albert Owens, who was shot and killed execution-style. Lora Owens, when I met you recently, you told me, to your knowledge, Stanley "Tookie" Williams had an image consultant?
LORA OWENS, STEPMOTHER OF MURDER VICTIM: Stanley`s been taught lately how to become this man of peace that he likes to portray. He`s been taught how to keep his anger under control. He`s a very vile, cold-hearted man, but now he`s trying to portray that he`s this man of peace, but he`s, you know, a sociopath. He doesn`t even feel a conscience, so it`s not hard for him to be at peace with himself. He has no emotion.
GRACE: Lora Owens, is it true that Albert Owens, your stepson, was working a second job that night? A lot of us have had to do that to get by. Other people, like Stanley "Tookie" Williams, preys on people like Albert Owens.
OWENS: It`s true. Albert was a hard worker. He had the attitude that if he needed anything or wanted to do anything, all he had to do was go out and get a job and make the money. And a whole lot of us people feel the same way. But you know, Williams never worked a day in his life. He`s always been taken care of by other people, whether it`s from taking from people, or now, the state of California. I wonder how much money they`ve spent in the last 26 years supporting him. He gets everything he could possibly want.
GRACE: Take a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HANDZLIK: We`re deeply disappointed that the governor has rejected the clemency request. We believe we stated a good case, but apparently, not good enough. The ninth circuit has denied our request for a stay, and we are proceeding to the U.S. Supreme Court. So we`re hopeful that one of the Justices on the Court will give Mr. Williams a full and fair hearing on the allegations that we have raised. The U.S. Supreme Court would be our last hope.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: And we are standing by tonight to find out whether the ninth circuit court of appeals or the U.S. Supreme Court will intervene and stop the execution of Stanley "Tookie" Williams, four-time convicted killer.
Look, nobody likes the death penalty. Nobody wants there to be a death penalty. But as long as people like Stanley "Tookie" Williams prey on innocent victims, many of us believe the death penalty is in order in certain cases.
Now, here`s a man that disagrees with me. Tonight on our show, a very special guest is joining us, the original trial lawyer, the defense attorney at the trial of Stanley "Tookie" Williams. His name is Joe Ingber. Sir, thank you for being with us. I think I`ve got Joe Ingber with me. Joe, are you there?
JOE INGBER, WILLIAMS`S FORMER DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes, I am.
GRACE: Hi, Joe. Thank you for being with us. I know that you are opposed to the death penalty of Williams. You want clemency. Why?
INGBER: Well, I think, if anyone, he has established, at least to my satisfaction, that by action, rather than just conversation, he has taken a hopelessly death sentence and converted it into action that was constructive. At least he has told the future generations, Don`t follow in my footsteps, and some of them have taken that heed. I think that if you take his conduct from the time he went into the prison and seen what he has done thus far -- don`t keep going back to the charges.
INGBER: The question of clemency is not how bad he acted. The question is, What has he actively done that warrants a governor to consider it? Now, the governor has spoken. I have not seen all the points that he had. I don`t even know what guidelines he used. On the other hand, he has spoken, and that`s the answer.
Now, I believe that defendants who go into prison who constructively act, not talk, about what they are going to do should be rewarded in some respect whatsoever, whether or not sufficiently or not. He is the only one of the 25 death penalties I`ve been involved in where he`s taken an absolute horrendous sentence...
GRACE: Everybody, with us, a very special guest, exclusively joining us tonight, Williams`s original trial lawyer. Now, this guy didn`t just sit in the law library and look up cases. He tried the case. It was a very difficult case at trial. A jury found Williams guilty.
Let me ask you this, sir. Joe Ingber with us tonight, everyone. The three purposes of the criminal justice system, once convicted, is for rehabilitation, deterrence value and punishment. What do you think is the appropriate punishment, sir, for putting an innocent, unarmed man face down on the ground and shooting him until he`s dead, gunning down this little old Asian lady for 120 bucks to buy PCP? What`s the appropriate punishment for that?
INGBER: Well, Nancy, if you keep describing the crimes in the manner that you did, there`s never going to be adequate punishment.
GRACE: Well, am I accurate? Did I misstate one single fact?
INGBER: No, no. You didn`t misstate them, but you`ve converted them into a situation that punishment should be the only consideration. I don`t think even our governor, when he changed the Department of Corrections to that of Corrections and Rehabilitation, envisions punishment as the sole basis or the only basis to consider what the prison system is.
GRACE: I agree. Well, as part of his rehabilitation -- that would be the second prong, sir -- has he ever admitted to the four murders and expressed remorse?
INGBER: Nancy, I have stood next to many, many people who have stood in front of judges asking for lesser sentences who mouth the litany of, Gee, I`m sorry, Judge, and ask the judge to give them less. When a man says, I believe that I`m not guilty, and chooses to be sincere enough not to attempt to use that litany...
GRACE: Wait, wait, wait! How can you say sincere enough? A jury found him guilty. The evidence is overwhelming! So where does sincerity play in his refusal...
GRACE: ... to apologize?
INGBER: Nancy, the evidence is not, as Marcia Clark, a mountain of evidence or overwhelming. It turned on a number of things. True, appellate courts have not reversed it, but it wasn`t overwhelming, nor was it so convincing that you can tell me it was a mountain of evidence, to quote Marcia.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WESLEY MCBRIDE, RETIRED GANG INVESTIGATOR: Lots of people have written books. Lots of people have done gang talk (ph), you know? And they didn`t kill people. I`m not sure that he has redeemed himself enough. I mean, and I don`t know what that would be, but certainly, writing a couple of kids` books doesn`t do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Welcome back. The clock is kicking down for the death penalty of Stanley "Tookie" Williams. It will be death by lethal injection. That is a -- as I say, a lethal cocktail, a mixture of various medicines straight into the vein. Apparently, the recipient just drifts off to sleep. Williams convicted four times of murder, all of his victims unarmed, all of his victims working at jobs, one at a 7-Eleven, three at a motel. They were family members, the whole family wiped out, according to a jury.
To Ted Rowlands, CNN correspondent standing by there at San Quentin. Hi, Ted. Bring us up to date.
TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Tookie Williams in the next hour will be moved to a cell next to the death chamber, and that is where he will await to spend the last six hours of his life, unless the unexpected happens.
Meanwhile, on the outside, his lawyers are still fighting for his life. On the table is another plea to Governor Schwarzenegger to grant clemency. It is basically a response to his non-grant of clemency. They`re saying, basically, that they would like a -- a little disturbance behind us here, looks like, between some protesters on either side, and the police have moved in here. And this is expected to go on throughout the evening. You have a lot of protesters on each side.
Meanwhile, Governor Schwarzenegger is being asked to readdress it because in his response, he said, basically, because Stanley Williams did not admit this crime, clemency was not granted. What the lawyers are saying is, He didn`t do this crime. We have three more witnesses that have come forward in the 11th hour, and they`re saying, Please reconsider. They also have a petition...
GRACE: What kind of witnesses, Ted...
ROWLANDS: ... for a stay in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.
GRACE: What kind of witnesses -- what kind of witnesses have come forward?
ROWLANDS: They -- in their letter to the governor, they name a former cellmate that says that one of his former friends, you know, made up some statements, and he was a key witness in the trial against Stanley Williams.
GRACE: OK, wait. Let me get this straight.
ROWLANDS: And then there`s another one...
GRACE: A former cellmate`s cousin`s uncle down the street says what?
ROWLANDS: Right. And the argument, of course, is why 20-plus years did it take this individual to come forward? And for that reason, it seems to be long odds for Stanley Williams and his lawyers to try to get this 11th-hour change. They`ve pretty much gone up every avenue and they have struck out until now, but they continue to fight.
GRACE: Hey, Ted Rowlands, who are all those people behind you?
ROWLANDS: Well, the Reverend Jesse Jackson is back here, and there`s a couple of radio personalities from Los Angeles that were harassing him or they were questioning him. And a couple of security people got into some fights. But for the most part, this is a peaceful area. And having covered these before, it is a very peaceful protest. Leading up to midnight, the crowds are expected to grow...
GRACE: Ted Rowlands, CNN correspondent, standing by at San Quentin. Stay with us.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STANLEY "TOOKIE" WILLIAMS: I believe that regardless of whatever happens to me, whether I`m alive or executed, that all of you will remember me. And this isn`t a good-bye. The fact of the matter is, I`m prepared for life, not death.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: People clapping to the tune, the sound, of Stanley "Tookie" Williams.
Straight out to Lora Owens, the mother of Albert Owens, gunned down by Williams. Final thoughts? Lora, are you with me? Final thoughts?
OWENS: Yes, I am with you. Well, final thoughts, Nancy -- gosh. I`m just glad that we`re almost to the end of this. I`m glad that, finally, Albert`s going to have the justice that he deserves.
GRACE: Lora Owens heading now to San Quentin to witness the execution of Stanley "Tookie" Williams on behalf of her son, gunned down by Williams.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OWENS: Albert was working the night shift because -- you know, he took that job because he needed the money. And Williams and his group come in.
Albert had been taught that if there`s a robbery, let them have the money. No one gets hurt. But Williams took him into the back room, literally just had him lie down on his stomach, and then shot him in the back at close range with a 12-gauge shotgun twice.
PETER FLEMMING, WILLIAMS` ATTORNEY: When I first met Stanley, I said, "If you did this, you should confess to it, because it will help." And he said, "If my innocence will cost me my life, so be it."
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GRACE: Welcome back, everybody.
I was just thinking there`s not one person in my immediate family that did not have to work a night job at some point. And when I think about Albert Owens working that second job and being executed in that manner, when I think Yen-I Yang, 67, his wife, Tsai-Shai Yang, 63, their daughter, their only daughter, Yee-Chin Lin, 43, gunned down as motel innkeepers.
We`ve looked and looked. We scoured the New York library, even in the microfiche division. This is all we could find of the Lin family, this one little paragraph. Not a picture, not a comment, no protestors, no vigils on their behalf tonight. They`re dead and gone. It`s almost as in they never even existed.
Straight out to Dianne Clements with Justice for All. Dianne, weigh in?
DIANNE CLEMENTS, JUSTICE FOR ALL: Hey, Nancy. Thanks for having me here tonight. You know, it`s odd to me that Tookie Williams, who has turned his back on gang activities and the gang lifestyle, continues to use...
GRACE: Well, wait a minute. That was after he was in handcuffs and leg shackles.
CLEMENTS: Well, yes, yes, yes. This is his new converted Tookie. But he uses "Tookie," which was his gang handle, now in his conversion and his new life that he has created.
I think it`s a little odd that he continues to identify with his gang name. And what does that mean? That means that I think he is not as converted as he wants us to believe and that everything that he has done up to this point has been carefully orchestrated in order to hopefully have clemency when it comes time for him to actually be executed.
GRACE: To Joe Ingber -- everyone, whether we agree with him or not -- a veteran trial lawyer, this guy has tried more cases than most lawyers have ever even heard of. And that is very rare. There`s a lot of lawyers out there, but not a lot of trial lawyers. He took Williams` case to trial.
Joe Ingber, before you take off, I want to ask you. We were talking about the various years of appeals and its appellate issues. Was it ever argued that he was factually innocent?
INGBER: I don`t think it was argued that he was factually innocent, simply because that`s not the appellate function. The appellate function is to determine if errors occurred during the trial which precluded a full and fair trial.
GRACE: Wait a minute. Wait a minute.
INGBER: Wait. No, no, Nancy...
GRACE: What about Jackson v. Virginia? That`s just simply not true. Jackson v. Virginia, that there is not enough evidence to sustain the conviction, insufficient evidence. That`s an appellate argument. Hello?
INGBER: The appellate lawyer`s function is to determine whether or not the trial that was conducted was infected or did not achieve that which a defendant is entitled to. That`s his function.
GRACE: Well, what -- are you telling me it was never argued that there was insufficient evidence, which you know is an appellate argument?
INGBER: Well, if they did not argue it, they argued other thoughts that they thought might be...
GRACE: So no?
INGBER: Nancy, I can`t second-guess what the appellate lawyers did any more than you can. All I can tell you is that, if they did what they thought an appellate lawyer is supposed to do and was unsuccessful, that`s not unusual.
GRACE: Well, do you think, Joe Ingber -- and I know you are a dedicated defense attorney -- do you think maybe they didn`t argue it because they couldn`t do it with a straight face, that the evidence was overwhelming?
INGBER: Nancy, I don`t want to speculate any more than I think you ought to.
GRACE: OK, OK, all right, I`ll go with that. Did he ever, ever take the stand and declare his innocence?
INGBER: He could not take the stand and declare his innocence, because our law permits impeachment by certain matters that would have opened the door. Now, the prosecution in the beginning of the trial never...
GRACE: That is so lame. You know, Joe, I respect you, because I know you`ve tried a lot of cases...
INGBER: Let me -- let me finish.
GRACE: ... but the Constitution gives you the right to take the stand.
INGBER: Let me get -- Nancy, he has the constitutional right to do so, but if he opens the door to anything, it impeaches him considerably.
GRACE: You mean the jury finds out about his record? Is that what you mean?
INGBER: Well, no, no. Let me tell you, Nancy, why he didn`t.
INGBER: Because the prosecution neglected to allege gang activity as part of the elements of aggravation.
GRACE: Oh, it`s the prosecutor`s fault now. I get it.
INGBER: If I put him on -- no, it isn`t. They just chose not to. I`m not going to speculate because I`m not in the speculation business.
GRACE: You know what? I`m not speculating. I`m taking a hard look at the appellate issues that were argued. And the fact he keeps claiming he`s innocent now, but he didn`t have the guts to take the stand and be cross-examined at trial, did he?
INGBER: That is not the issue, Nancy. It is something that you will present as part of your speculative reasons why he couldn`t say it. That`s not true.
GRACE: Well, why is he saying it now but wouldn`t tell a jury?
INGBER: Because he -- I can`t speculate any more. He believes...
GRACE: You were at the trial. You went down on the mat for the count with this guy. Why didn`t he take the stand?
INGBER: Because he would be impeached by gang activity that was not raised.
GRACE: OK. All right. I`m going to translate that, and you can tell me if I`m wrong.
INGBER: Well, OK.
GRACE: In other words, Joe Ingber made the calculated and probably correct trial strategy decision for a defense lawyer not to put his client on the stand because the jury would then find out about the little thing -- what was it -- founding the Crips.
INGBER: Anything to do with gangs would have infected the entire trial.
GRACE: OK. As you can see, this is why Joe Ingber wins so many cases. Joe Ingber, veteran defense attorney. We agree to disagree, sir, but I have to say you are great in the courtroom. Thank you for being with us.
I want to quickly go now to Lawanda Hawkins. You met Ms. Hawkins here on our show last week. Ms. Hawkins, it is a couple of hours before Tookie Williams is set for execution. What are your thoughts, in light of what happened to your son?
LAWANDA HAWKINS, SON KILLED BY CRIPS MEMBER: I`m very pleased today, Nancy, that the governor denied clemency to Stanley "Tookie" Williams. Regarding my son, I think that`s a strike for him, because my son, as I indicated, Reginald, was murdered by this gang he co-founded called the Crips. I think it`s doing justice to the four victims...
GRACE: Is this a shot of your son?
HAWKINS: No, that is not.
GRACE: OK, I think we`ve got up another victim from a different crime.
Elizabeth, let me see if you can pull up that shot in just a moment.
Go ahead, Ms. Hawkins.
HAWKINS: Yes. And I`m so glad that Crime Victims United of California took this stand regarding denying clemency for Stanley "Tookie" Williams. And we would like to also say that we are truly pleased that the governor denied clemency and that he didn`t turn a blind eye to the four victims of Tookie Williams and also to the other thousands of victims that Tookie Williams have created.
And I also would like to know -- they`re talking about redemption, and everyone`s protesting today all over Los Angeles for Tookie. But I do not hear or I do not see no protests for the four victims of Tookie Williams.
GRACE: Not one.
HAWKINS: Not one.
GRACE: Not one. In fact, most people don`t even know the motel innkeeper and his family`s name, Yen-I Yang, Tsai-Shai Yang, their daughter, Yee-Chin Lin.
Very quickly to David Wohl, who we have just gotten by satellite. David Wohl, defense attorney, witnessing the execution there at San Quentin. Bring us up-to-date, David Wohl.
DAVID WOHL, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, Nancy, you know, you really have to read Governor Schwarzenegger`s formal decision on this case to appreciate the fact that this wasn`t even a close call for him. It`s been five days since the clemency hearing. And everybody thought he was having a tough time, wringing his hands.
He slam-dunked this request for clemency all across the board. I mean, it was incredible. From the violent nature of the crimes, to the appellate process that took 24 years, to the fact that he claims to be redeemed, yet at the same time he doesn`t admit any wrongdoing, and finally to his claims of helping young kids stay away from gangs, which there`s no evidence to support.
So all across the board, there was a complete denial of this petition, thoroughly, factually and legally. Incredible. At 11:30 p.m. tonight, I will be going up into the death chamber and witnessing this execution along with 16 other members...
GRACE: Why? Why are you witnessing the execution?
WOHL: You know, Nancy, it was offered to me. It was made available. I think it`s a very rare event. I think it`s an event that our viewers deserve to get a firsthand report on. It`s probably the highest profile execution, arguably, since Gary Gilmore in 1977. And it`s just something I simply couldn`t pass up, as a member of the media and a lawyer, Nancy.
GRACE: Standing by at San Quentin, David Wohl.
And very quickly, before we go to break, to Pat Lalama, investigative reporter, Pat, are you familiar with the lethal injection cocktail?
LALAMA: Yes, I am. But it`s easier to put it this way: There are actually three different injections. Yes, one is sodium pentathol, one is pancuronium bromide.
But essentially what it does is it goes in three stages. Number one, we put him to sleep. Number two, we basically paralyze him so he doesn`t move. And number three, we stop the heart. End of story, and it`s good night Tookie.
GRACE: So long story short, Tookie Williams gets to just go to sleep.
GRACE: Goodbye number C29300, inmate number.
Standing by, Pat Lalama and David Wohl, also Jim Moret.
Very quickly to tonight`s "Case Alert." Tonight, we need your help bringing home two missing people. 56-year-old Cal Rountree disappeared, Atlanta, Georgia, three months ago. Rountree`s dark blue Pontiac Bonneville with Atlanta plates, APB-7793, also missing. If you have info on Cal Rountree, please call DeKalb County police, 404-294-2574.
Also missing tonight, 13-year-old Heather Eller, who disappeared from Dumfries, Virginia, October 21. If you have info on this little girl, call 703-792-6500.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REVEREND JESSE JACKSON, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST: I feel pained by the governor`s decision to choose revenge over redemption and to use Tookie Williams as a trophy in this flawed system.
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GRACE: Welcome back. Williams set for execution in just a few hours. The U.S. Supreme Court or the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals could intervene and stop that execution.
Michael Hardy, do you expect them to intervene?
MICHAEL HARDY, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I don`t expect them to intervene based on the history that we`ve seen of the appeals. Moreover, I don`t expect it, in terms of the leanings of this court. I don`t think that they would intervene.
And I agree with what Reverend Jackson said. It`s unfortunate. The governor had an opportunity to strike -- to do something about redemption, and he failed to do so.
GRACE: You know, James Anderson, AKA Jim Anderson, a veteran death penalty prosecutor out of that jurisdiction in California, it`s not just about redemption, Jim.
JAMES ANDERSON, ATTORNEY: Absolutely not. This is calling for punishment. And if the Reverend Jackson feels pain about the governor`s decision, I feel pain that he`s so blindsided by this staged and, you know, orchestrated petition for clemency, in which the guy cannot even admit his own guilt.
If you were going to be redeemed, if you have redemption and you changed your life around, you admit your wrongdoings. You don`t sit there and tell the world, "I`m innocent, I`m innocent, but I`ve changed my life around." Now, spare me. You know, that`s my line: Spare me.
GRACE: Me, me, me, me, me, me. What about it, Alan Ripka? Never once has declared his own factual innocence, except through his P.R. people.
ALAN RIPKA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Yes, that weighs heavy against him, Nancy, but I`ll tell you something: You`re turning this guy into a martyr. And at the end of the day...
GRACE: That`s a good point.
RIPKA: ... a life sentence in jail is worse than putting him to sleep. And I`ll tell you...
GRACE: A life sentence is worse. Then why does he want the life sentence if it`s worse?
RIPKA: Well, you know something? Because he wants to preach, and he wants to help gang members learn that what they`re doing is wrong.
RIPKA: And you know something? Being alive and telling those kids that it`s wrong is going to help, Nancy.
GRACE: Like they`re listening? Are you kidding me?
RIPKA: Well, someone is listening, Nancy.
GRACE: Yes, the media. The media.
Very quickly, to Dr. Robi Ludwig, psychotherapist, why so many people sympathizing with Tookie Williams, as opposed to these four dead innocents?
DR. ROBI LUDWIG, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Well, he`s claiming he`s a new man. And also, he doesn`t have a choice over his life. So when someone doesn`t have a choice over life or death, they`re often viewed as a victim. And then some people just have a strong hard-line against the death penalty because they feel it`s barbaric.
GRACE: Back to Pat Lalama, investigative reporter standing by at San Quentin, tell me the atmosphere at San Quentin. Tell me about the vigils and the protests going down, Pat Lalama.
LALAMA: I think it`s very understated. And I predicted it would be. Look, let me paint the picture for you. You know, there`s a little sit- down sort of prayer thing going on over there. We`ve got the helicopters hovering. People have their various incendiary signs.
But there`s really nothing all that dramatic about it. And here`s why, Nancy: I`ve always believed that this is the wrong poster child case for clemency. I think, in the collective soul and conscience of this state which, by the way, 70 percent are for death penalty, but that`s another issue, people know this guy doesn`t deserve it.
Clemency is the law, yes. The governor is allowed to consider it. But this is not the case. And I think they`ve really blown their arguments, played their aces, and lost credibility by making this man the poster child for clemency. So I think it`s very understated and I think tomorrow it will be over.
GRACE: Jim Moret, do you believe that Williams is being turned into a martyr of some sort?
MORET: Well, I went to an event a couple of weeks ago where his books, some of his readings, were held. That was actually that event where you saw Jamie Foxx and you heard Stanley "Tookie" Williams speaking on the telephone.
GRACE: Tell me one thing. How many people showed up?
MORET: Well, there were about 200-or-so kids from the area that were brought in for the event specifically. And, frankly...
GRACE: Didn`t Jamie Foxx say, "Don`t kill him on my birthday, because it would be a real downer"?
MORET: Yes, he did. And I thought that was not a great argument.
GRACE: Yes, I don`t think that went very far.
MORET: There were, frankly, as many members of the media, though, as there were people in the audience. And is he being turned into a martyr? There was a sense at that meeting, that Stanley Williams was being portrayed as a Nelson Mandela or Martin Luther King. That`s the tone of the meeting.
So is it the case that he could be turned into a martyr? Perhaps. But I think that Pat Lalama is correct. This may have been the wrong case for which to put all your hopes on abolishing the death penalty.
GRACE: In our few seconds before break, Lawanda Hawkins, final thoughts?
HAWKINS: I`m, again, pleased that the governor denied clemency. I`m with a young lady who was just on before me. He was the wrong person to use as a poster boy, someone who has killed four people and who co-founded one of the worst gangs of this modern time, that has went into the African- American community and has destroyed it? No. Clemency? I don`t think so.
GRACE: Lawanda Hawkins` son was murdered by the Crips gang.
Very quickly, to tonight`s "All-Points Bulletin."
FBI and law enforcement across the country on the lookout for William Junior Jordan, in connection with the 2001 murder of 49-year-old James Rouse, Jr. (ph)
Harmon (ph), 63, 6`2", 150 pounds, brown hair, blue eyes. If you have info, call the FBI, 404-679-9000.
Local news next for some of you. But we`ll all be right back. And remember, coverage of the Tookie Williams death penalty, 3:00 to 5:00 Eastern, tomorrow Court TV.
Please stay with us as we remember Sergeant Jerry W. Mills, Jr., just 23 years old, just 23, an American hero.
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GRACE: Tara Grinstead, beauty queen-turned-school teacher still missing. Let`s go live straight down to Ocilla, Georgia. Robert Preston, editor with the "Douglas Daily News."
I understand a tip to a tip line resulted in a massive search. What was the tip and what`s the result of the search?
ROBERT PRESTON, EDITOR, "DOUGLAS DAILY NEWS": Well, the search took place over the weekend. The EquuSearch team from Texas has been in town. They came in the week of Thanksgiving. And they stayed for a few days, left, and then came back at the first of last week.
They were hoping that they would have several hundred volunteers come out and search the Ocilla and Irwin County community. And they did. And they had about 150 or so people that were here. And they canvassed the area. They focused on wooded areas that hadn`t been extensively searched during the recent grid search that took place in the community.
GRACE: OK. I want to go to Tara`s sister, Anita Gattis.
Anita, do we know more about the tip that led to the search and what clues were found?
ANITA GATTIS, TARA GRINSTEAD`S SISTER: Well, the search on Saturday was approximately 300 people were here. And they searched the area that EquuSearch had previously planned on searching.
They got a tip on Saturday night, and it was not in Irwin County. It was in Ben Hill County, Northern Ben Hill County. So they sent all 100 volunteers who returned on Sunday to that area. I know that some articles of clothing were found. I`m not really sure exactly what the tip was. I was not given that information, but it was phoned in to either the sheriff`s...
GRACE: Articles of clothing? What were the articles of clothing?
GATTIS: Yes. I know it`s a couple of t-shirts and a pair of jeans were found.
GRACE: Is there any way to trace them back to Tara? And have the other items have been evaluated yet?
GATTIS: Nancy, you know how this is on waiting for evidence and the family being notified if anything`s been evaluated. We were told a month ago a rush was put on it, we`d have it in a week. We have still not heard anything from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation as to any results of any...
GRACE: Let me give that tip line. Anita Gattis, we are staying on this story. Tip line, everybody, 912-386-2564, $100,000 reward.
Thank you to all of my guests. Tough topic tonight.
Our biggest thank to you for being with us and wrestling with the death penalty along with us. Coming up, headlines from all around the world. I`m Nancy Grace signing off for tonight. See you right here tomorrow night, 8:00 sharp Eastern. And until then, good night, friend.