The Black Politico

Orlando politics and more -- from a black perspective

What Aramis Ayala is missing about the death penalty

Four young men were killed in Philadelphia by a confessed murderer named Cosmo DiNardo and his cousin Sean Kratz. Most Americans watched as law enforcement surrounded the area where the bodies were buried but how they found those bodies is even more intriguing.

DiNardo agreed to cooperate with police if prosecutors would take the death penalty off the table. So, they used the death penalty as a negotiating tool to get a confession and to locate the bodies of the four men. DiNardo even confessed to two other murders he committed when he was 15 years old.

DiNardo lured two of the four men to a 90-acre farm which his parents owned where they met his cousin, Sean Kratz. Two of the men got out of the truck to discuss a marijuana sale and when they turned their backs, DiNardo pulled out a .357 Smith & Wesson handgun and shot them. He added their bodies to an oil tank that had been converted into a cooker where he had dumped another dead body just hours before. He then set the bodies on fire although they did not burn.

Without the death penalty being an option, police and the families of these men may still be wondering what happened to them. The community would still be on alert and  murderers would still be on the loose.

In the Ninth Judicial Circuit in Orange and Osceola counties in Florida, State Attorney Aramis Ayala made a blanket policy that her office will not seek the death penalty in any case during her administration.

In an interview with WFTV Channel 9, Retired Chief Judge Belvin Perry said, the Governor is going to get tired of snatching cases from Ayala “on almost a weekly basis.” Perry is right. While every case involving murder does not warrant the death penalty the death penalty can be used as leverage as well to solve crimes and a seasoned prosecutor would know that.

Unfortunately, the reality we face is a scary one and history shows murders that warrant the death penalty happen all across America, all too often. Reasonable people can agree the death penalty is highly controversial but no one person can make the decision to enforce it or not to enforce it. That is done by our legislators and Ayala took their job away from them by making the announcement in March that she will not seek it on any case, present and future. That is not prosecutorial discretion. That is a policy that supersedes the blueprint, which is the law.

What is also bothersome is the dragging of other professionals for her decision not to pursue the death penalty. Attorney Roy Austin defended her before the Florida Supreme Court and ruined his reputation in the eyes of some, for doing so. Unfortunately, a host of other professionals’ careers are also on life support as a result of her decision.

Open letter to Governor Rick Scott about State Attorney Aramis Ayala

There’s a letter floating around that is drafted to the Governor of Florida from some who say they are sick and tired of the politics of Aramis Ayala. The recent traffic stop by The Orlando Police Department that she calls racially motivated is making it’s rounds on social media, with the help of Orange and Osceola county taxpayers, and has actually been posted and supported by activist and Journalist Shaun King.

Below is a copy of the letter. Tell us your thoughts.

Dear Governor Rick Scott:

As a registered voter of the Ninth Judicial Circuit of Florida, I ask that you suspend Aramis Ayala from office and request the Senate review that suspension for impeachment.

While reasonable people can disagree on the death penalty as a policy issue, an elected official who swore to uphold the laws of the State of Florida should not be allowed to unilaterally cherry-pick which laws she will or will not follow. We ask that you remove her immediately and appoint someone of high legal stature, like the former Ninth Circuit Chief Judge Belvin Perry to take her place.

Aramis Ayala helped to disenfranchise over 500,000 voters that reside in Orange and Osceola counties during her election and she did not run on the platform of not enforcing the death penalty therefore she is not a duly elected officer of the court.

Helpful Source:

http://www.clickorlando.com/news/man-who-helped-state-attorney-win-election-calls-death-penalty-decision-an-embarrassment

Ayala has spent over $1.4 million of money from George Soros to unfairly call her opponent, Jeff Ashton, a racist. Now, she has taken $17,000 of our money and paid a Public Relations firm to unfairly do the same to you for rightfully taking 24 death penalty cases from her. As aware and active voters, we take this kind of deception very seriously.

Helpful Source: 

http://www.clickorlando.com/video/state-attorney-aramis-ayala-pays-for-pr-firm-with-taxpayer-money

We also ask that you investigate her husband, David Ayala, and the money from George Soros, that was filtered into his non-profit organization which is supposed to help restore the rights of violent offenders.

https://www.scribd.com/document/345684146/Follow-The-Money-Soros-Ayala-Timeline

Helpful Sources: 

http://www.clickorlando.com/news/investigators/aramis-ayala-sought-advice-on-answering-the-soros-question

http://www.wftv.com/news/9-investigates/9-investigates-emails-show-months-of-collaboration-between-aramis-ayala-anti-death-penalty-groups/514259617

Finally, if the Supreme Court sides with you in the lawsuit she filed against you, her position will likely be to say she’ll look at each case on a case by case basis and decide if it is worthy of the death penalty. After her press conference in March and as a result of her own words, we do not believe she would have an epiphany and somehow now enforce the law.

Please do not let us down. We look forward to your action on this matter.

Signed,

One of the 500,000 disenfranchised voters of Aramis Ayala

Ayala’s position on the death penalty is still a hot topic

Yesterday Governor Rick Scott pulled 21 death penalty cases from Orange and Osceola county State Attorney Aramis Ayala.

This morning, Representative Bob Cortes held a press conference calling for Ayala’s removal from office.

Last week, there was a rally supporting Aramis Ayala in Tallahassee and a press conference held by victims of violent crimes and law enforcement. Both were sparked by the State Attorney’s decision to not pursue the death penalty in any case in Orange and Osceola counties which are located in Florida; a state that lawfully uses the death penalty to punish those guilty of heinous crimes.

We, as a unit, are fighting about where to fight. Some say we should be standing with Ayala and if you’re not, you’re called a sell-out. Others say we should be following the letter of the law.
As black people, we march and take to the streets, the capitol or anywhere else we see fit. We have that right to be able to peaceably assemble. But what really are supporters of Aramis Ayala marching for?

I’ve heard they are marching to protest the death penalty and Ayala’s decision to not enforce it. The fact of the matter is the death penalty is already legal in this state and Ayala’s decision to not enforce it is unlawful. Color of Change was a part of the movement and helped to provide petitions showing Floridians are against the death penalty.

Many of those petitions aren’t from Florida residents.

Ayala spent over a million dollars pleading her case to a small portion of Orange and Osceola counties to win the seat of State Attorney after she disenfranchised Republicans, Independents, Libertarians and NPA’s by dumping a write-in candidate into the race. With all those ad dollars coming in, never once did she use the airwaves, online or print media to tell voters her position on the death penalty. Do you think that was just by happenstance or because no one asked her?

On the flip-side, when she was an Assistant State Attorney, she had no qualms about the death penalty. She was even excited to try her first homicide case.

Prosecutors are typically questioned extensively about their position on the death penalty and most are questioned when being interviewed for the job. Someone who is uncomfortable with the death penalty would likely not be suited as a homicide prosecutor nor would they be rising through the ranks as she did in Jeff Ashton’s office if she were anti-death penalty.

But, let’s say her views changed after she launched her campaign. After receiving $1.4 million dollars in campaign money from a billionaire donor named George Soros, who is an anti-death penalty proponent, her decision to not seek the death penalty is being questioned, and rightfully so.

As State Attorney, Ayala does have prosecutorial discretion. She used that when she decided not to seek death against Markeith Loyd, who police say killed his pregnant ex-girlfriend and Officer Debra Clayton. Governor Scott removed her from the Loyd case and assigned State Attorney Brad King from the Fifth Judicial Circuit in Florida. The Governor’s reasoning to do so is absolutely on point.

Ayala’s error is not that she used prosecutorial discretion to keep from charging Loyd with death, but her error lies in announcing a blanket policy not to pursue the death penalty in her administration. At all. Ever. For any case current or in the future.

That’s right. Even cases in the future. God forbid another Pulse nightclub tragedy happens and the suspect is taken alive.

Florida Statute 782.04 1(b) states, “In all cases under this section, the procedure set forth in s. 921.141 shall be followed in order to determine sentence of death or life imprisonment.” Shall within a statute is a must. It’s mandatory. It’s imperative. She did not follow the law.
On another note, Florida Statute 921.141 then continues to spell out the proceedings for the sentence of life or death imprisonment for capital felonies. The aggravators for pursuing the death penalty are within this same statute. It appears, Loyd’s case fulfills at least 5 of 16 aggravators. Prosecutors only need one to seek the death penalty.

Making this about race, inflames both sides. Florida Senator Randolph Bracy even wrote an op-ed saying Florida Governor Rick Scott is being “vengeful”. Vengeful? Really? That’s not just a stretch, it’s outright wrong to describe him as such and to use the media to brand him as a “vengeful Governor” simply for upholding the law and the Florida Statutes.

Gov Rick Scott removes 21 cases from State Attorney

Gov Rick Scott removes 21 cases from State Attorney

Ayala announced her policy which supersedes the law and that is what this is all about. Nothing more. Nothing less. Making this about law, is the only way and this case should be sitting before a judge and jury as a death penalty case. The jury would have the option to sentence Loyd to death, certainly not a State Attorney who is the prosecutor. If the framework in Florida Statute 782.04 1(b) on capital felonies is to be followed on a case-by-case basis, how in the world can Ayala do that when she has a policy to never pursue the death penalty?

Ayala has neglected her duty as prosecutor by not looking at each on a case-by-case basis and therefore should be removed from office as her personal beliefs and her donors personal beliefs clearly conflict with the law.

State Attorney’s decision to be anti-death penalty in a death penalty state is a dangerous one

There has been an outcry from those who support and those against the death penalty over the past several days.
State Attorney Aramis Ayala held a press conference saying she would not seek the death penalty on accused murderer Markeith Loyd.
She also said, she would not seek the death penalty on any other cases during her administration; current and future.
She stood with her pastor at her side while making this announcement. When a reporter asked shouldn’t voters have known about her position on the death penalty, Ayala arrogantly responded, “they know now.”
Well, we do know now and so does the Governor of Florida. Governor Scott rightfully asked the State Attorney to recuse herself from the case yet she refused.
This decision is a big one as it means she took control by taking a piece of the law from the hands of legislators in Tallahassee and decided to govern it as she sees fit. In other words, she’s legislating her own anti-death penalty rules from the office of “Top Cop” in Orange and Osceola counties. In case anyone is wondering, a Prosecutor’s job is to be the bad guy in the eyes of criminals, not their advocate. In this case and all future cases, she is claiming to be an advocate for crime and criminals.

Sorry, Ayala, but you don’t get to do that. At least not in Florida.

State Attorney of Ninth Judicial Circuit at press conference telling community she will not seek the death penalty on any cases

State Attorney of Ninth Judicial Circuit at press conference telling community she will not seek the death penalty on any cases

It’s clear she’s not ready for the position of Prosecutor, in recent stories she’s shown she’s not ready to manage an office by holding a press conference and outting employees that she thought did drugs during off-duty hours. She’s never had any management experience prior to being elected and she likely should have put her name in the hat for Public Defender instead of State Attorney since her sympathy toward criminals far exceeds her ability to be a prosecutor.

Seeking only Life without Parole for an alleged cold-blooded killer is disturbing and some are silent because they fear retaliation.

On Monday, a hearing was live-streamed and Ayala, who was recused from the case by the Governor, was there. So was Markeith Loyd and so was Brad King, the prosecutor appointed to take over the case. As Loyd left the courtroom he looked at the State Attorney and nodded at her as if they were working together.

This is a situation that most have never seen before. Even Judge Lauten, who presided over the hearing, said he’s not seen anything like this before in his career.

This is dividing communities of color, further and here’s one reason why. The Black and Brown communities are filled with good people. People who want to provide their children with a great education and it oozes people who want to be safe. Ayala’s move shows there is no system in place in Orange and Osceola counties to defend the rights of Law Enforcement or law abiding citizens.

My Mother used to take us to the bus stop armed, to let the drug dealers, prostitutes and all other criminals know that Rhea, Rhetta and any other kid that rode our bus, were not to be bothered. She is fearless. Many are not. Having a system in place that protects us is warranted. Having a balanced judicial system is necessary.

On the other hand, it’s clear, we have a problem with justice in America. Black and Brown men and women populate prisons for violent and non-violent crimes. However, what Ayala is doing is not the way to make the necessary changes and legislating from a Prosecutor’s seat means she lied when she took the oath of office to uphold the law.

After the hearing on Monday Ayala released a motion to stay on the case. In that motion, she mentioned, she is a “popularly elected” State Attorney. That is also untruthful.
She was elected after closing the primaries against State Attorney Jeff Ashton with a fake write-in candidate. That loophole disenfranchised Independents, NPA’s and Republicans.

She still couldn’t get her head above water during the campaign so she sold her soul to billionaire and Black Lives Matter financier, George Soros, who then ran a campaign against Ashton to the tune of $1.4 million in slanderous ads that called Ashton a biased, racist, State Attorney.

Furthermore, over 20,000 people wrote-in another name on the general election, ballot as opposed to selecting Ayala, something that has never happened in a State Attorney’s race in Orange and Osceola counties.

Ayala’s oath appears to uphold Soros’ agenda and not the law of the State of Florida.
If she leaned on her Christian beliefs to make this decision, she did not separate church and state and that should scare everyone. Not all people believe in Christianity and if a non-Christian was in that seat and made a decision based on their faith, all hell would break loose. In this case, all hell is breaking loose because many believe having the Death Penalty on the table is a tool prosecutors use to get the harshest punishment they can. Ayala’s actions are summing up to look like political suicide.

There are many active groups and caucuses out there claiming to represent Black people. But, they are listening to organizations like the NAACP and other Black groups that may not represent the perspective we truly have. But, these same organizations are the ones that in the 1990’s helped fuel the mass incarceration problem by asking President Clinton to crack down on crime in the Black communities; and that wasn’t the work of the Republicans, that was the work of the Democrats. They then sketched out a plan to help stop and punish crime and that led to many people of color being incarcerated for non-violent offenses.

Ayala has a history of being sympathetic to criminals. She worked as a Public Defender and also mentioned on her campaign trail that she is married to a felon who spent 7-10 years in federal prison for dealing drugs. According to Ayala, he has since done his time and is living a new life.

But what about those who were addicted to drugs and purchased drugs from him? Do they get a new chance at life? Likely not. Addicts, if they survive, are treated as criminals and not as people suffering from a disease called addiction.

As for the real movement to make change between some law enforcement officers and the Black and Brown communities, currently, there are over 32 bills in Congress for Blue Lives Matter and none for Black Lives Matter. Congress is where the change really takes place.

If Ayala and Soros are using Markeith Loyd as their poster child for stopping mass incarceration or the death penalty, their actions have put the final nail in the coffin of the Black Lives Matter movement and shame on all the Black and Brown organizations that are allowing this to happen.