Williams appeal continues into second day

In Philadelphia on Monday, a hearing continued in the final appeal for Terry Williams, the man scheduled to be executed early next week for a murder he committed in 1984.

Williams’s co-defendant in the murder testified before Philadelphia judge Teresa Sarmina, trying to halt his childhood friend’s death sentence.

Marc Draper originally testified that he and Williams killed an older man during a robbery. Now, Draper says the murder of Amos Norwood was related to a sexual relationship between Norwood and Williams.

Draper says he made up his original story under pressure from police and the suggestion that cooperation could earn him parole.

Asked by the judge why he stood by statements for 26 years that he now says are false, Draper said: “Looking back now it’s almost laughable. Going through the interrogation room, I was a sheep for whatever they wanted me to do. I regret that. I’m almost ashamed to say that right now, because I was so gullible.”

Williams’s lawyers won’t speak to the press during the ongoing hearing. Mark Bookman, Executive Director of the Atlantic Center for Capital Representation says Williams does not deserve to die for the crime he committed as a teen.

“You’ve got an 18 year, 3-month-old who was by virtually all accounts at this point, sexually abused almost his entire life. To think that he’s the worst of the worst is absurd.”

Testifying last week, the prosecutor in the original case said she had no proof of a sexual relationship between Williams and the murder victim.

“I never told him [Draper] to lie about anything. I never told any witness to lie about anything.”

Pages of her case notes produced last week show she heard reports that the older man had sexually abused other boys.

 

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