Oct. 13


A story of Revenge, Change and Forgiveness

He was a "Lone Wolf" - years before the term was appropriated to describe self-inspired individuals on a killing rampages who use religion as vindication of their actions.

In the days following the 9/11 attacks, Mark Stroman began "hunting Arabs," - as he described it - his nights occupied by prowling the highways and running victims off the road.

To avenge the deaths of the twin towers, he graduated to shooting people whom he believed were Muslims from the Middle East - they were actually immigrants from Pakistan, Bangladesh and a Hindu from India. He killed 2 and partially blinded a young man from Bangladesh.

Thankfully, he was arrested before he could commit his planned massacre of dozens of Muslim worshipers at a local Dallas Mosque. Stroman was going to make a statement "like Muhamad Atta (the hijacker of the first 9/11 plane) did" trying to avenge the senseless killing of innocent Americans by killing innocent Muslim worshipers. To his friends, he had said that he planned to die in the carnage and mayhem. Luckily police got to him first.

The Press at the time described Stroman as an "American terrorist." Today we might as well call him an "American Lone Wolf."

From 2004 and for the next 7 years, filmmaker Ilan Ziv met and befriended Mark
Stroman on Texas' infamous death row, where he had been since his capital murder conviction in 2002. At trial Stroman was described by the prosecutor as a "monster, a cancer to society", yet Ilan was perplexed to meet a complex man full of contradictions, who shared the same troubled soul as the most recent "lone wolves" who used Jihad as a cover for their personal failings and justification for their crimes. By then, Stroman had become a man in search of meaning and redemption. So Ziv set out to document what he called "the enigma of Mark Stroman."

The result is a fascinating portrait of a serial killer, and a unique insight into the profound changes he went through.

Ziv chronicled his relationship on film, but also set up a blog for Stroman. Unbeknownst to both the filmmaker and Stroman, among the growing readership was Rais Bhuiyan, Mark's only surviving victim.

An Islamic pilgrimage seeded in Rais a desire to forgive Mark and to spare his life. He had a "strange" idea: if he was ever to be whole, he must reenter Stroman's life. He longed to confront Stroman and speak to him face to face about the attack that changed their lives.

Mark asked for forgiveness from his victims and Bhuiyan publicly forgave him, in the name of his religion and its notion of mercy. Then two months before Mark's execution, Rais waged a legal and public relations campaign against the State of Texas and Governor Rick Perry, to have his attacker spared from the death penalty.

An Eye for an Eye is the record of this riveting human drama of revenge, change and forgiveness, and of the surprising friendship that developed between the Israeli born filmmaker and Mark Stroman, who by his own admission, had never travelled beyond Dallas let alone Texas.

It is a tale that stands as a poignant message in times when fear, hate and revenge are part of the daily rhetoric.

3 days before his execution, Mark Stroman declared in an interview; "If a terror attack happens again, stay united and do not stereotype the Muslims ... Don't be a dumbass ... do not be a Mark Stroman." Those words are more relevant today than when they were recorded just 5 years ago.

In theatres October 28th

New York - Cobble Hill Cinemas

Dallas/Ft. Worth - AMC Grapevine Mills 30

Houston - AMC Studio 30

Los Angeles - Laemmle Music Hall

New York

Cobble Hill Cinemas

265 Court St, Brooklyn, NY 11231, USA

Phone: 718-596-4995
Dallas- Ft. Worth

AMC Grapevine Mills 30

Grapevine Mills, 3150 Grapevine Mills Pkwy, Grapevine, TX 76051, USA

Phone: 972-539-5909

AMC Studio 30

2949 Dunvale Rd, Houston, TX 77063, USA

Phone: 713-977-4431
Los Angeles

Laemmle Music Hall

9036 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211, USA

Phone: 310-478-3836
(source: vimeo.com)


DA to seek death penalty in killing of deputy

The Jefferson Parish District Attorney's Office will seek the death penalty for the man suspected of fatally shooting a Sheriff's Office deputy earlier this year. District Attorney Paul Connick announced the decision Thursday morning after a grand jury indicted Jerman Neveaux on a count of 1st-degree murder in the death of Deputy David Michel.

Authorities have said Neveaux shot Michel during a struggle after Michel stopped Neveaux on Manhattan Boulevard in June.

"We believe the circumstances surrounding the shooting death of Detective Michel warrant the harshest penalty," Connick said in a prepared statement. "After consulting with my staff and Detective Michel's family, I have decided that my office will seek the death penalty."

Neveaux also was charged with aggravated assault with a firearm, 2 counts of resisting arrest by force or violence and one count of possession of a stolen firearm.

(source: WWL TV news)


Motions to take death penalty off the table denied

The death penalty remains a possible sentence for accused cop-killer Jonathan Renfro.

Motions to take execution off the table for Renfro were denied Wednesday by District Court Judge Lansing Haynes during a pre-trial hearing at the Kootenai County Safety Building.

Filed by Renfro's public defense attorneys after several similar motions were denied last month, the motions considered Wednesday argued a variety of reasons Renfro, 27, should be spared execution if convicted of f1st-degree murder for the May 2015 killing of Coeur d'Alene Police Sgt. Greg Moore.

One of the motions denied called for the judge to preclude the death penalty because the Public Defender's Office receives inadequate funding to do its job effectively. Public defenders argued their case load in Kootenai County is too high, making it difficult for them to provide adequate representation for any defendant.

"Based on the evidence and those arguments, the court is going to deny the defendant's motion to preclude the death penalty," Haynes ruled.

Renfro was present at Wednesday's hearing at the Kootenai County Public Safety Building, donning a red-and-white striped jumpsuit.

Also in an another attempt to avoid the death penalty, Renfro's defense motioned to suppress video evidence gathered during Moore's interaction with Renfro, claiming it shows an unreasonable seizure.

According to police reports, Moore stopped Renfro around 1:30 a.m. when he walked down the sidewalk of a dark and quiet Coeur d'Alene neighborhood which had been targeted by car prowlers. Moore reportedly called in Renfro's driver's license information over the radio shortly before the shooting.

Kootenai County Public Defender John Adams said an unconstitutional seizure ruling would bump the first-degree murder charge down to a 2nd-degree murder charge. The death penalty cannot be invoked with a 2nd-degree murder case. That motion was also denied.

"This court finds that Mr. Renfro was never detained or if he was, slightly detained, during the call-in of information to the dispatch center," Haynes said. "That was a reasonable action by the police as it led to learning that Mr. Renfro was on probation and that further inquiry was reasonable police conduct."

(source: CDAPress.com)

A service courtesy of Washburn University School of Law www.washburnlaw.edu

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