Free Robert Earl

Sometimes, the truth and what’s true aren’t the same.
The Truth is that Robert Earl Council did not rob Ronald Henderson, nor did he Intentionally Murder Ronald Henderson as a part of a Robbery. However, it’s True that Robert Earl Council is serving the 27th year of a death sentence for Intentionally Murdering Ronald Henderson during a Robbery 1st degree.

ALL FACT NO CAPP…

Let me give you the short version —

From court documents, in August of the 1994 Grand Jury term, Robert Earl Council was indicted for 2 counts of Capital Murder, in connection with the death of Ronald Henderson.

According to the Grand Jury indictment, Robert Earl Council was armed with a deadly weapon, i. e., a pistol, when he threatened Ronald Henderson with force in order to commit the theft of Ronald Henderson’s rifle. And, as a part of the theft, Robert Earl Council intentionally murdered Ronald Henderson.

3 pivotal things must be established in order to comprehend this legal lynching.

1. Robert Earl Council was 20 year old black man, who EPD officers despised.

2. Ronald Henderson was:
A white man and:
A Henderson

3. Johnny Henderson was Mayor of the City of Enterprise.

Now, back to the story…

Dale Marsh, who had been working with Ronald Henderson from 1981 up until Henderson’s death in July 1994, was appointed to represent Robert Earl Council. And, even though Robert Earl Council petitioned the Trial Judge to dismiss Marsh as counsel, he was forced to accept Marsh as lead attorney.

It gets crazier yet…

At trial, the State failed to establish all of the essential elements of a Robbery 1st degree.

From their own witnesses, it was revealed that Robert Earl Council never THREATENED Ronald Henderson with a pistol, Robert Earl Council was not present in the house when the theft occurred, and it was never established that Robert Earl Council knew that the theft had taken place.

Yet, the handpicked all-white jury took the D. A.’s word and sent the message.

In spite of absolutely no evidence that Robert Earl Council committed a Robbery, he was found guilty and sentenced to die in prison.

When this ploy was exposed and pointed out to the Appeals Court, they changed the facts of the case to cover up for the racial lynching of Robert Earl Council.

This story is way overdue and it’s scary to think of how many other people are suffering under a similar situation.

Where is the media when it comes to exposing and /or highlighting these miscarriages of justice?

Let’s bombard the media outlets with inquiries until they call the City of Enterprise and the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals out and demand justice.

 

Put It On The Glass

Marcus Neal,  the State’s ONLY witness to the theft of the rifle, testified that upon arriving at Dale Green’s house (where the theft took place) Robert Earl Council left the group and departed.

(picture of R.T. 1000)

At which time Neal, Adams, Green and Ronald Henderson went into Green’s house to negotiate a trade of drugs for the rifle. Once inside Green’s house, Neal testified that while trying to display the rifle, Henderson fumbled with the rifle and dropped it.

According to Neal, he (Neal) caught the rifle as it was falling, at which time Adams got the rifle from Neal and ran out of the house.

Several minutes later, based upon Neal’s testimony,

“After everything was over and we were on our way back to Brian Council’s house, a car came from out of no where and ran us off the road.”

Neal, further, testified that at this time, he got down in the floor of the car, as he knew he was about to die. When he heard several gun shots.

From the State’s Key witness,  it was clarified that Robert Earl Council did not INTENTIONALLY MURDER RONALD HENDERSON IN THE COURSE OF A ROBBERY 1ST DEGREE. 

But, an all white jury, a white trial judge and a white appeals court thought differently. And 26 years later,  he remains languishing in a Alabama prison serving a death sentence. 

Still Fighting For Freedom

After 3 days of investigating, Police Reports confirm that the Enterprise Police Department knew that Ronald Henderson was smoking crack cocaine,  ran out of money, tried to sell a rifle to get more crack cocaine,  when he was tricked out of his rifle.

They knew Henderson was extremely high on crack cocaine and angry about losing his rifle, when he almost ran over Mylette McKnight, then minutes later ran Larry Brooks car off the road, placing Robert Earl Council (and the other passengers in the car) life in imminent danger. They knew that Robert Earl Council fired several shots in the direction of Henderson’s oncoming car (Henderson was tragically hit by 2 bullets and died) as a last ditch effort to prevent Henderson from killing him.

THEY KNEW ALL OF THIS IN 3 DAYS… 
yet,  they still charged Robert Earl Council with 2 Counts of Capital Murder. 

They still disregarded his 6th Amendment Rights and forced him to go on trial,  with Ronald Henderson’s friend as his attorney. 
They still struck all 19 African people from the jury pool. 

AND EVEN THOUGH MARCUS NEAL -the State’s only witness to the theft of the rifle – TESTIFIED THAT ROBERT EARL COUNCIL WAS NOT PRESENT IN THE HOUSE WHEN THE THEFT OCCURRED,  THAT ROBERT EARL COUNCIL DIDN’T THREATEN WITH A GUN TO TAKE THE RIFLE —
they still found Robert Earl Council guilty of Robbery 1st degree thus elevating the self defense shooting into a Capital Murder conviction.
They knew all this,  but still sentenced Robert Earl Council to die in prison. 

BUT THEY CAN’T GET AWAY WITH THAT,  THAT’S WHAT THE APPEALS COURT IS FOR… 

In a jury trial,  the trial transcript is gospel , and nothing can be argued that is not in it.  No attorney can add nor take away from the transcript. The APPEAL COURT’S REVIEW OF A CASE IS BOUND BY THE RECORD. (meaning they can’t consider any argument not in the transcript).
Well that’s how it usually works… But in some situations,  they make exceptions. 
In Robert Earl Council’s case,  the transcript clearly states that ROBERT EARL COUNCIL WAS NOT PRESENT IN THE HOUSE WHEN THE THEFT OCCURRED.

Yet,  somehow,  in order to justify upholding a wrongful conviction -where a young Black Man was charged with killing a white man, who happen to be related to the Mayor of Enterprise- the Court reasoned that Robert Earl Council was guilty of Robbery 1st because — peep this –

They said Robert Earl Council was IN THE HOUSE AND GAVE WILLIE ADAMS A DIRECT ORDER TO TAKE THE RIFLE BECAUSE RONALD HENDERSON WAS INTOXICATED. 

How is it that so,  when that can be found no where in the transcript? No witness ever testified to anything similar to that. 
Yet, they still upheld the wrongful conviction. 

THE APPELLATE ATTORNEY COULD HAVE STOPPED IT… BUT HE LET THE 14 DAY TIME PERIOD TO OBJECT ELAPSE… AND THIS ALTERED VERSION BECAME THE LEGAL BASIS OF ROBERT EARL’S CONVICTION. 

I USE TO WONDER WHY OR HOW COULD THIS HAPPEN,  BUT LIFE HAS SHOWN ME THE ANSWER TO BOTH. 
NOW, THE ONLY THING LEFT TO FIGURE OUT IS… 
HOW LONG ARE WE GOING TO SIT QUIET AND ALLOW IT TO CONTINUE?