Nidal Malik Hasan was sentenced to death Wednesday at his court-martial after being found guilty of the premeditated murders of 13 people and the attempted murders of 32 others in the 2009 shooting in Fort Hood, Texas.  The panel of 13 senior military officers unanimously decided after deliberating for two hours that Hasan should be put to death.  He was also stripped of pay and other benefits.  Hasan will be taken to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas where the military’s death row is.  There are five other inmates on death row.  The military justice system works similar, but different to the American justice system at large.  Hasan’s verdict will not become official until an Army general reviews the case and approves.  After that, there are several mandatory appeal stages and then the President, as Commander-in-Chief, must sign the death warrant.  Hasan can waive some of the procedures, but not all of them.

Prosecutors aggressively pursued their case during the almost month long court-martial.  They called about 100 witnesses, many of them survivors.  The American-born Hasan presented no case, no witnesses, no testimony, no mitigating circumstances, and no evidence.  He only gave an opening statement in which he admitted to being the shooter.  Many have said, including his defense attorneys (who served only an advisory role because he represented himself) that he deliberately wanted the death penalty as a means of becoming a martyr.

His previous lawyer, John P. Galligan, who has visited Hasan in prison regularly, denied those allegations saying that he could not put on the defense he wanted.  Hasan was barred by the judge from arguing that he carried out the attack in defense of Afghans and the Taliban.  Galligan, also called the trial, a “ ludicrous show trial”.

  1. Lon Spector says:

    They have given this mad man exactly what he wants. He wouldn’t have killed to begin with if he didn’t believe that 72 virgins wouldn’t be peeling grapes for him for all eternity.


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