Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Tookie's last call

Stories like these are only possible with your help!
You have the power to keep local news strong for the coming months. Your financial support today keeps our reporters ready to meet the needs of our city. Thank you for investing in your community.

This is California's execution chamber. Our taxes pay for it, so in some sense it's our responsibility. But right now there's not a darn thing we can do to prevent Stan Tookie Williams from walking in there at 12:01am next Tuesday to die.

It's not like people aren't trying to stop the execution. The NAACP is flying around the state urging clemency, attracting the attention of the press. (There are also those calling for his head. We linked to them last time.) There's the campaign to save Tookie, which has the support of Snoop Dogg, Jesse Jackson, and Jamie Foxx, who played him in a 2004 biopic. If clemency is granted, Tookie will still spend the rest of his life in prison -- his natural life -- with no chance of ever getting out.

The one and only person who can close that execution room door and save Tookie Williams is Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. As the day grows closer, will all the media attention push him towards clemency, or away from it?

Support for LAist comes from

China, Iran, Vietnam and the US accounted for 97% of all death penalty executions in 2004. The practice is seen, elsewhere, as barbaric. For example, Austria got rid of its death penalty back in 1950, around the time toddler Arnie turned 3.

More photos of death row on the California Department of Corrections website