Posts Tagged ‘death penalty’

CNN’s Anderson Cooper reported tonight that an Arizona jury in Pima County convicted border vigilante Shawna Forde of murdering American-born Latinos Raul Flores and his 9-year-old daughter Brisenia Flores. The fate of Forde, who reportedly has ties with the tea party, the Minutemen American Defense, a border vigilante group that polices the border with their own guns and surveillance equipment, and FAIR, the anti-immigration group that helped design Arizona’s SB 1070, is still being determined as the jury will convene tomorrow as to discussing a final sentence for Forde, who is eligible for the death penalty.


Border vigilante and convicted murderer, Shawn Forde


The murders occurred on May 30, 2009 during a home invasion of the Flores home in Arivaca, Arizona. According to the CNN post, Forde was also convicted for  attempted first-degree murder for shooting Brisenia’s mother Gina Gonzalez, along with other aggravated assault and robbery charges. Forde’s alleged accomplices, Albert Robert Gaxiola and Jason Eugene Bush, will be tried later this year.

This case has been a rallying cry to many US Latinos who have claimed that the mainstream media has provided minimal coverage. During the tragic events in Tucson of the Gabriel Giffords’ shootings, the Flores case came into the spotlight of many Latino-theme blogs and news pages, since one of the victims, Christina Taylor-Green, was also 9 years old.

Tonight, a news search of the conviction lists articles and coverage from outlets such as ABC News, CNN, The Village Voice, USA Today, and The Daily Mail, but the majority of articles are local and originate from Arizona. We think, however, that this case will garner even more national attention, especially if Forde is sentenced to execution.

In addition, local web sites in Arizona, such as BriseniaFlores.com are dedicated to keeping the memory of the Brisenia alive.

In spanning reader comments on several sites, the general sentiment is that Forde got what she deserved, and that justice has prevailed. However, a few comments painted the blame on Flores, who allegedly dealt drugs out of this home (although that has never been proven). Here are just a few of the comments we have read tonight:

From USA Today

  • From eyepatch: “wonder why the father and mother were not married and how many people they killed with their drug trafficking?”
  • From The Real McCoy: “Her particuler (sic) group was obviously no militia if they were breaking into drug dealers homes and killing families to get money. Sounds more like a street gang using a non street gang name for a cover.”
  • From Anonymous: “The founder of an Arizona border vigilante group has been convicted of murder for recruiting gunmen and leading a home-invasion raid that killed a 29-year-old father and his 9-year-old daughter. Prosecutors said she was seeking money for her group, Minutemen American Defense Corps.”

From ColorLines.com

  • From I AM AMERICA: “Phuck her, phuck the minutemen, and phuck arizona !!”
  • From Cherisse Gardner:“Death is too good for her, let her spent the rest of her life locked up with a predominantly Latina population.”
  • From ironicalAngel: “Give her life in prison with no chance of parole and every week have her look at photos of that little girl and her parents before and after she killed them. Have her write a letter of apology to Gina Gonzales every week for the rest of her life. May it be long.”

From The Tucson Citizen

  • From Bill: “Speaking as one who is definitely not in favor of illegal immigration, this filth deserves the death penalty!!!!!!  Nothing justifies this!!!!!!!”
  • From Pamela Powers: ” ‘border activist’? Forde was a crook (see her record from other states) and a white supremacist opportunist. She is a thug.”
  • From Joel: “I wonder if you advocate for “brown-on-white” cases being so-called hate crimes. What’s wrong is wrong, it doesn’t make a crime more wrong is someone is a color, or whatever else you don’t like about them. The fact remains if “dad” (note the lower case “d”) wasn’t into criminal activity his family might still be alive. It was just a matter of time. Nonetheless, Shawna Ford and the others should be given the death peanlity….”

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