8A - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, April 17, 2001
High court delays second execution in 2 months.
WASHINGTON (AP) - For the second
time in two months, the Supreme Court post-
poned an imminent execution and agreed to
hear a convicted killer's appeal.
The court said yesterday that it will decide
whether a man accused of the rape and murder
of a 17-year-old boy got an unbiased lawyer
and a fair trial.
Walter Mickens Jr. was assigned a lawyer
who, only days earlier, had represented the
dead boy on an unrelated assault charge. The
same Newport News, Va., judge handled both
The Sixth Amendment not only guarantees
the right to a lawyer, it guarantees a lawyer
without a conflict of interest, Mickens' appeals
"It's inconceivable that such a violation of
ethics and procedure could be allowed to go
forward unchecked, and now the Supreme
Court will address that," said Mickens lawyer
Robert J. Wagner.
Mickens was scheduled to die today. He now
has a reprieve at least until next fall, when the
high court is expected to hear his case.
Also next fall, the court will hear a separate
death row appeal testing whether it is cruel and
unusual punishment to execute someone with
In that North Carolina case, the justices
stopped the execution of Ernest McCarver
hours before he was scheduled to die last
In recent years the justices have seen 80 or
90 last-minute appeals from death row inmates
annually. The court does not keep statistics on
how often the justices agree to step in, but
death penalty opponents said it happens rarely.
It takes the "yes" votes of at least four jus-
tices for the court to hear a case. Those votes
The nine-member court has at least a five-
member majority in favor of the death penal-
ty in general, but many members of the
current court have not been explicit about
Last week, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg
made what were apparently her most specific
public remarks on the death penalty. She did
not express outright opposition, but said she
would support a moratorium on imposition
of the death penalty then under consideration
"I have yet to see a death case among the
dozens coming to the Supreme Court on eve-
of-execution stay applications in which the
defendant was well represented at trial,"
Ginsburg said during an April 9 lecture in
"People who are well represented at trial do
not get the death penalty," she added later.
Ginsburg has gone on record as saying she
would have granted last-minute stays, or
delays, in capital cases.
In Mickens' case, his lawyer allegedly failed
to cross-examine witnesses aggressively af
trial, and did little to portray the victim's own
background, Mickens' new lawyers contend. K
The boy, Timothy Hall, had been arrested for
allegedly shoving his mother during an arguj
ment. Lawyer Bryan Saunders was appointed
to represent Hall on that charge.
After Mickens was arrested, Saunders wa$
appointed as his lawyer. Saunders has said hq
felt no conflict of interest and believed hi$
duty to Hall ended when he learned his client
The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled
this year that Mickens got a fair trial, and
refused to order a new one.
-vlre aL t Ah
send ships to
The Washington Post
WASHINGTON - The Bush adminis-
tration is considering sending an aircraft
carrier or an Aegis radar-equipped war-
ship to the South China Sea to ensure the
safety of continued U.S. surveillance
flights off the coast of China, Pentagon
officials said yesterday.
The proposals, which were prepared for
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld,
are among a range of responses the
administration is considering in advance
of tomorrow's meeting between U.S. and
Chinese officials in Beijing to discuss the
April 1 collision of a U.S. Navy EP-3E
Aries II surveillance plane and a Chinese
F-8 interceptor over the South China Sea.
Many senior administration members
continue to fume about the 11-day stand-
off over the detained 24-member crew of
the Navy plane and over China's failure to
return the plane itself. "There's a desire to
have China pay a price. That will be mani-
fested with some tangible actions here,"
an administration official said.
The most likely actions include granting
visas to prominent Taiwanese politicians
to visit or transit in the United States, lim-
iting military-to-military contacts, cutting
off or downgrading other official
exchange programs, imposing limits on
technology transfers, delaying approval of
satellite launches and opposing Beijing's
bid to host the 2008 Olympic Games.
Russia's top independent.
media organization shut
down by Putin's allies
A Chinese military policeman looks out from a guardhouse in front of the U.S. Embassy
yesterday in Bejing.
The Washington Post
MOSCOW - The forces that took over Rus-
sia's only major independent television network
began dismantling the rest of tycoon Vladimir
Gusinsky's media empire yesterday, closing
down his respected daily newspaper and prepar-
ing to do the same with his weekly news-
At the same time, Russian tax police
announced that they will prosecute two top exec-
utives at Gusinsky's small cable television sta-
tion, which has been carrying an underground
version of the news produced by the journalists
forced out of his flagship NTV network during a
pre-dawn takeover Saturday.
The combination of events suggested that
Gusinsky's enemies, fresh from their weekend
victory at NTV, have escalated their efforts to
eliminate his news outlets, which have produced
some of the most skeptical coverage of President
Vladimir Putin's administration since he took
power last year. Although Putin has disavowed
involvement in the campaign, his appointees
head the tax police as well as Gazprom, the nat-
ural gas monopoly that seized NTV and is now
shutting down Gusinsky's print publications.
Sevodnya, the first media organ created by
Gusinsky and one of Moscow's most liberal news-
papers, was abruptly closed last night just as its
Tuesday issue was about to be sent to the printer.
Mikhail Berger, the editor in chief, said publisher
Dmitri Biryukov had ordered him not to send the
issue to the presses and then fired him.
"He has done a great service to the Kremlin
today by eliminating a critical paper," Berger
said in an interview late last night. "It's all con-
nected - what is happening with NTV and
Itogi, the newsmagazine published in partner-
ship with Newsweek (owned by The Washington
Post Co.), may face an identical fate. Magazine
staff members were summoned to an emergency
meeting Tuesday where they expect Biryukov to
announce that they will be out of work as well;
said deputy editor Masha Lipman.
The disappearance of Sevodnya and Itogi fol4
lowing the change in management at NTV will
alter the news landscape in a country still strugi
gling with the concept of free media. Althouglh
Gusinsky in the past used his media holdings to
serve his political ends, NTV, Sevodnya and
Itogi were considered among the most profes.
sionalmedia outlets in Russia. Without them;
Putin will face far less scrutiny of the war irk
Chechnya, official corruption or government
deception in cases such as the sinking of the sub4
Putin's press minister, Mikhail Lesin, said yes;
terday that the government was not involved ir
the NTV situation. "We do not interfere in the
activity of private companies," he said, according
to news agencies.
But the tax police, under a chief just installed,
by Putin, took aim Monday at TNT, the small:
entertainment cable station that has been allow-
ing NTV's ousted journalists to air their news-
casts on its channel since Saturday's takeover,
interrupted their final broadcast in mid-sentence.
Police yesterday charged Yelena Metlikina,,
TNT's chief accountant, with tax evasion and
said they will file similar charges Thursday*
against its general director, Pavel Korchagin,.
according to their attorney, Pavel Astakhov. Each:
faces from four to seven years in prison if con
One senior official said the adminis-
tration was unlikely to seek limits on
trade, which would be temporary pend-
ing China's admission to the World
Trade Organization, but that "most
other things are on the table and under
The Bush administration is also mov-
ing closer to a decision on what to
include in a package of arms to Tai-
China vehemently opposes the arms
sale, since it regards the island of 23
million as its own and has vowed to
reunite it with the mainland.
The Taiwan arms sale likely will be
discussed at a meeting today between
Rumsfeld and other senior administra-
tion officials, including Secretary of
State Colin L. Powell and national
security adviser Condoleezza Rice, that
also will take up the issue of how to
protect future American surveillance
flights off the Chinese coast.
If tomorrow's meeting in Beijing
goes well, officials said, the United
States might simply resume the flights
without any special escorts. But other
options include sending an aircraft car-
rier with fighter jets that would fly in
the general vicinity of the reconnais-
sance planes or dispatching an Aegis
radar-equipped U.S. warship to the
region to track Chinese fighter jets that
might intercept the U.S. reconnaissance
Continued from Page IA
will be lost," said Ross Love, speaking on behalf of black
The Rev. Damon Lynch, a black clergyman, said the
city's black youths do not know how to channel their anger.
"They just feel like nobody's listening," he said. "Their
anger is not just at officers, but their own black leadership.
The feeling is we're not listening, and we have to turn that
About-300 people attended a teen forum yesterday at the
New Friendship Baptist Church. Many blamed middle-
aged black leaders for Cincinnati's problems.
"The older generation could have prevented this," said
Derrick Blassingame, 15, president of the newly formed
Black Youth Coalition Against Civil Injustice. "Our black
leaders are not leading us."
Angela Leisure, whose son was killed April 7 by a police
officer, urged black youths to be active in peaceful protests.
"I don't want to see anybody else hurt, she said. "Let
my son be the last one."
Luken said he will appoint a commission to look into
solutions. Unlike previous groups, he said, the panel will
be able to oversee implementation of its plans. That would
require City Council approval.
The City Council planned to meet today to discuss
demands by black leaders for a city ordinance allowing
officials to bypass Cincinnati police officers and firefighters
when hiring new chiefs.
The city charter requires chiefs to be promoted from the
ranks, but black leaders say that perpetuates problems. The
1,000-member police force is 28 percent black; the city of
311,000 is 43 percent black.
Cincinnati was sued last month by citizen groups who
accused the police department of failing to end 30 years of
police harassment of blacks.
The flash point for the protests was the fatal shooting
April 7 of Timothy Thomas, 19, as he fled from officers
trying to arrest him on 14 warrants, mostly for traffic
The FBI, police and the county prosecutor are investigat-
ing the shooting by Officer Stephen Roach, who is white.
Roach, 27, was placed on paid administrative leave.
Fifteen blacks and no whites have died in confrontations
with police since 1995, four of them since November.
Continued from Page 1A
than other groups. The most recent
available statistics show that six years
after enrolling as undergraduates, 53
percent of Native American students,
59 percent of blacks and 69 percent
of Hispanics earned a University
diploma. In contrast, 86 percent of
white students and 87 percent of
Asian Americans graduate in six
Any combination of a number of
motives influence students to with-
draw from the University, but LSA
sophomore Rosio Suarez said some
students are disheartened when they
come to the University "expecting to
find a big community, and they
"Students feel culturally unsafe,
insecure," Moroney said.
In order to combat feelings of iso-
lation and loneliness, student groups
make an effort to create a niche
where students can feel comfortable
and relate to each other, Moroney
"NASA serves as a place where
students can come and share some-
thing similar," said Engineering
senior Darren Goetz, a co-chair of
the Native American Student Associ-
While some Native American stu-
dents come to the University from
urban upbringings, others come from
more traditional backgrounds or reser-
vations, he said.
"If you're religious, it's analogous to
going to a place where there aren't any
churches," Goetz added. Student
groups provide a "home away from
home" that make the University more
Continued from Page IA
that he had been robbed by two armed
men near Stockwell Residence Hall.
The investigation is still pending and
no money has been recovered.
"It could take days or weeks -there;
is no time frame," Brown said. "We:
have questioned some people in con-,
nection with this incident."
Continued from Page1IA
Although the year ended on a tense
note, several assembly members said
they were happy with the new assem-,
bly and anticipated a successful,
semester in the fall.
"When we come back in the fall,'
campus will notice a change in MSA "
Vice President Jessica Cash said.