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Author Clarke Kevin Source US Catholic v 65 no10 Oct 2000 p 27 ISSN 0041-7548 Number BRDG00052997 Copyright The magazine publisher is the copyrightholder of this article and it is reproduced with permission Further reproduction of thisarticle in violation of the copyright is prohibiteA GROUP OF DISTINGUISHED ILLINOIS CITIZENS including formerSenator Paul Simon and attorney-novelist Scott Turow did something remarkable lastAugust They sat in silence while some not-so-famous Illinois citizens talked aboutcapital punishment The morning hearing offered the American public a rare opportunityto speak its mind about this peculiar institution of ours since the reinstatement of thedeath penalty in the United States in 1976 One of those who spoke was Costella Cannon whose son Frank Bounds died onIllinois death row before his sentence could be carried out denying his guilt until theend Bounds had been convicted of murder based on a confession that even the state nowacknowledges was extracted under torture At least nine others currently awaitingexecution in Illinois similarly confessed after hours of police torture Dont allow another innocent person to die Cannon told the commission Iwould rather see the guilty live than to believe that one innocent person died Visit deathrow put that on the top of your agenda Visit death row and youll understandCannons passionate testimony briefly turned the public conference hall in the basementof Illinois Thompson Center in Chicago into a revival meeting as sporadic cries ofsupport rose from the audience
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