San Quentin Death Row Inmate Asks Schwarzenegger For Clemency

SAN QUENTIN (KCBS) – A convicted killer on San Quentin’s death row is asking Arnold Schwarzenegger to grant him clemency as one of his last acts as governor.

Schwarzenegger has until Sunday to decide Kevin Cooper’s fate whether it be a grant for clemency or the death sentence.

In June of 1983 a Chino Hills California couple, their 10-year-old daughter and 11-year-old family friend, were murdered in their home.

The couple’s eight-year-old son, whose throat was slashed, survived.

The area’s assemblyman Curt Hagman said Kevin Cooper, who was convicted of the crime 25 years ago, did it.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth:

“This man took a hatchet and literally hacked up a family that was living there and it’s been a horrible memory for those who still live in Chino Valley today,” said Hagman.

DNA evidence linked Cooper to the crime, but his attorney Norman Hile said the evidence was tampered with, destroyed, and hidden in order to “frame him”.

Hile said more proof of doubt came in 2009, when five appeals-court judges signed a dissenting opinion stating Cooper is probably innocent.

“We should not have somebody executed so we don’t face what’s happened in Texas recently, which is after people were executed that people were found out to be innocent,” said Hile.

Governor Schwarzenegger already denied a clemency request from Cooper back in 2004 just months into his governorship.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

More from Anna Duckworth
  • SoCal

    I hope this guy does not get off on a technicality. I was a teenager living in Chino when these murders occurred. This horrific attack, along with the Night Stalker deviant, Richard Ramirez, left the community in fear. Friends were sleeping in their closets, because they feared someone was coming in the middle of the night to kill them.

    Cooper was identified immediately as the suspect and he found his way to a boat as a means of escape as I recall.

    That poor family. I hope this guy DIES for what he did to that family. JUSTICE!

  • jenny

    i doubt that Arnold is stupid enough to fall for this guy’s BS.

  • M. Thomas

    I am from Texas. It will not hurt anything to verify this man’s story. The evidence has been lost? Something does not sound right.
    Please people, do not follow the lead of Texas. I have seen to many innocent people released from prison in this godless state. Texas is a bad place. Even George W. Bush let an innocent man be put to death when he was govenor of Texas. Texans kill with pride and use no common sense. And to think that this state is full of christan churches. What a joke.

  • Barb

    Did the judges, in fact, say that this man was “probably innocent”?

  • Barb

    @M. Thomas Why must we always blame Christians? Please!! Get real!

  • Karen

    @Barb, yes they did. It was an unprecedented and extraordinary plea by the entire panel of judges, who had seen ALL of the evidence. They essentially stated that they had never seen a case so egregiously prosecuted, nor evidence so tampered with. You should do a Google search on the case. It will horrify you, and not in the obvious way.

  • paul bedford

    Paul england,i feel sorry for the family,but if there is any doubt then you should not execute and ther is doubt and there is on what i have been reading.

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