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Tuesday 28 May, 2024
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Who is Kosoul Chanthakoummane?

BY Anas Shah Aug 16, 2022. 03:04 pm UPDATED: Aug 18, 2022. 08:11 pm

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The execution date for KOSOUL Chanthakoummane, who was found guilty of killing a real estate agent in 2006, is set for August 17, 2022.

Chanthakoummane is seeking for a stay of execution after he has twice since his conviction successfully stopped it.

Sarah Anne Walker

Who is Kosoul Chanthakoummane?

After being freed from a North Carolina jail for aggravated kidnapping and aggravated robbery, Kosoul Chanthakoummane was living with his relatives in McKinney, Texas, in 2006.

He was 25 years old and had already completed seven of an 11-year prison term after being found guilty of holding two ladies at gunpoint before stealing a car and being pursued by police.

After being freed, Chanthakoumane, a Laotian immigrant’s son, found employment as a delivery driver.

Real estate agent Sarah Anne Walker, 40, was discovered dead in a mobile home on July 8, 2006, by a couple walking their dog.

She had suffered 33 stab wounds, bites, and beatings, an autopsy revealed.

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A necklace and Walker’s wedding ring were among the valuables that was missing and was never found.

Two months later, Chanthakoummane was detained when a witness who had been hypnotised said they had seen a young Asian male at the mobile home.

According to the witness, police published a sketch of Chanthakoummane.

Hypnosis is a relaxing technique that was employed in the 1970s and 1980s to help witnesses remember what they had seen; however, due to its dubious dependability, it has been outlawed in many places.

Chanthakoummane’s real estate agent, who assisted him in purchasing his flat, testified to the jury in 2007 that the night before the murder, he had shown up at her house and was pounding on her doors.

At the time, Chanthakoummane’s motivation was robbery, according to prosecutor Curtis Howard, who claimed: “He had no money.” The McKinney-Courier Gazette said that “he was overdrawn on his checking account and he desired something that belonged to somebody else.”

Chanthakoummane had stabbed Walker, but “it didn’t go the right way,” Chanthakoummane’s counsel acknowledged to the jury during the trial.

Before admitting he had been at the mobile home that day but had not seen Walker there during the course of the trial, Chanthakoummane revised his story a number of times.

Chanthakoummane maintained his innocence, but the jury found him guilty in 2007 after only 31 minutes of deliberation.

In a statement to the McKinney Courier-Gazette following the decision, Jackie Mull, Walker’s sister, said: “The evidence was overwhelming and demonstrated the savagery of a cold-blooded killer.”

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She continued, pleading with the jury to execute Chanthakoummane, saying, “If the death penalty is saved for the worst of the worst, I believe Kosoul Chanthakoummane has earned himself a front row seat.”

Chanthakoummane’s father, Joe Walker, expressed his desire for life in prison without the possibility of parole rather than the death penalty.

Why Kosoul Chanthakoummane wants his death sentence to be delayed again?

The fatal injection execution of Chanthakoummane has been set for August 15, 2022, in Huntsville, Texas.

Chanthakoummane, who was sentenced to death less than two days ago, is requesting a third reprieve, arguing that there is no solid evidence to support his conviction.

In October 2007, after the jury had deliberated for three hours, he was initially given the death penalty.

The most recent delay occurred in July 2017, when Chanthakoummane’s lawyer, Gregory Gardner, claimed that his client was convicted using now-discredited forensic science, including “bite-mark comparisons, hypnotically induced identifications, and inaccurate DNA calculations,” according to a report in the Austin Chronicle.

A judge determined that Chanthakoummane would remain on death row in both cases since the DNA evidence supported his conviction.

Joe Walker, Walker’s father, died in 2021, although prior to his passing, Joe always maintained that he did not want Chanthakoummane to receive a sentence.

“I don’t have any hate towards him at all. I don’t want him put to death,” Walker said in a video titled Witness of Mercy: A Father’s Forgive­ness.

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“But I’m not angry enough to reject the Lord and his teachings … Our Lord said that the greater the sinner, the more entitled they are to mercy,” he said.

A nonprofit organisation called Advocates with Death Penalty Action, which works to end the death penalty, has requested a stay in the case of Chanthakoummane’s sentence, which is set to be executed on August 17.

Death Penalty Action executive director Abraham Bonowitz told CNHI News, “We are not prepared to say today that [Chanthakoummane] is innocent, but we are here to say that there are some legitimate questions.

Chanthakoummane continues to maintain his innocence, and his sister, Sopha Monica Xaykosy, said in a press conference that she believes her brother is innocent.

“I think that they were in a rush,” she said. “I feel like they needed to pinpoint someone, and they had my brother as a scapegoat to answer the family.”

 

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