On this date, May 25, 2001, Abdullah Tanzil Hameen A.K.A Cornelius Ferguson was executed by lethal injection in Delaware. He had committed a murder when he was 17 years old and he was paroled, only to kill again. That is why I do not believe that juveniles will not kill again if they were to be released.
Abdullah Tanzil Hameen A.K.A Cornelius Ferguson
INTERNET SOURCE: http://www.clarkprosecutor.org/html/death/US/hameen715.htm
Summary: Drug deal in mall parking lot. Hodges in front passenger seat of car driven by accomplice Tyrone Hyland. Hameen in back seat. When argument erupted about deal, Hameen shot Hodges at close range as he attempted to exit car. Hameen admitted shooting, but claimed that the beeper Hodges was reaching for was a gun, and he shot in self-defense. Hameen was on parole for a murder committed in 1980. Accomplice Hyland pled guilty to Murder 2d Degree and was sentenced to 15 years.
Ferguson v. State, 642 A2d 772 (Del. 1994).
Ferguson v. State, 1996 WL 1056727 (D. Del. 1996).
Hameen v. Delaware, 212 F3d 226 (3d Cir. 2000).
Final / Special Meal:
Lobster, crab legs, baked potato with sour cream, a mango and ice water.
"Tara, I hope this brings you comfort and eases your pain some. Mom and Shakeerah, I love you. I'll see you on the other side. That's all."
Abdullah T. Hameen, born Cornelius Ferguson, was sentenced to death in 1992 for the murder of Troy Hodges during a drug deal outside a Claymont mall on August 5, 1991. Troy suffered a contact gunshot to the back. At the time of Troy's murder, Hameen was on parole for a murder committed in 1980, when he was 17 and killed a patron of a bar. He also had a 1985 conviction and a 1991 conviction for aggravated assault in which two people were seriously injured.
Hodges, who was apparently a drug dealer living in Wilmington, had negotiated to purchase a half-kilogram of cocaine for $10,000 either directly from Hyland or from a third party, with Hyland acting as middleman. Hodges arranged to meet Hyland at the Mall. Hodges had a friend, Alvin Wiggins, accompany him to the Mall. Wiggins was seventeen years old at the time of these events. Wiggins was also apparently a drug dealer. Wiggins testified at Ferguson's trial. According to Wiggins, before they drove to the Mall, Hodges gave Wiggins a plastic bag holding two smaller packages, each of which contained $5,000 in cash. They then drove to the Mall and parked in the lower lot. Wiggins testified that after they arrived at the Mall, Hodges took one of the two packages of money and instructed him to stay in his car until he received a sign from Hodges or until he returned. Hodges then left and entered a passageway leading to the upper parking lot of the Mall. Hodges was no longer visible to Wiggins. Wiggins waited for Hodges for approximately ninety minutes. During that time, he unsuccessfully attempted to contact Hodges via his `beeper.' When Wiggins learned that someone had been shot at the Mall, he drove away.
Ferguson gave a tape recorded statement to the Delaware State Police on September 26, 1991. In his statement, Ferguson admitted that he was a passenger in a car driven by Hyland to the Mall on the night of August 5, 1991. Ferguson stated that he was sitting in the back seat of the car. According to Ferguson, when they arrived at the Mall, Hyland parked the car. Hodges got into the front passenger seat of the car. Hyland and Hodges then argued about money and drugs. According to Ferguson, Hyland then clandestinely gave him a gun. Ferguson stated that the gun was already cocked when he received it. Ferguson pointed the gun at Hodges. Hyland and Hodges continued to argue. Ferguson stated that although the car was moving slowly towards the Mall, Hodges opened the car door and tried to leave the car. According to Ferguson, Hodges then slapped at the gun, causing it to `accidentally' fire a single shot. Ferguson claimed that he did not know Hodges had been wounded and died, until days later. Stewart Cohen testified that on the night of August 5, 1991, he was in the parking lot of the K-Mart at the Tri-State Mall. Cohen stated that he heard a `popping sound.' Cohen turned and saw a blue Chevrolet Cavalier moving slowly in the parking lot. Cohen stated that he saw a person shoved or jumping out of the car. Cohen testified that this person then ran towards him and collapsed on the sidewalk. An autopsy revealed that Hodges died of massive hemorrhaging due to a single gunshot wound. The record reflects that the bullet, which was fired from behind, entered his left side and traveled through his body in an upward trajectory. The hole in Hodges' shirt and the wound in his torso indicated that the muzzle of the gun had been pressed against Hodges' body when the shot was fired. The Supreme Court of Delaware also noted that the gun used in the shooting belonged to Ferguson.
Hameen's execution came after unsuccessful last-minute appeals by his attorney and spiritual adviser, and unprecedented deliberations by the state Board of Pardons, which was impressed by his apparent conversion but nonetheless denied his request for clemency. Testifying before the Board of Pardons on Wednesday, an angry Tara Hodges blasted Hameen, describing him as "garbage" that should be disposed of. "You're not sorry for killing my brother, you're just sorry that you got caught," she told him. "You are evil. You cannot change and you haven't changed." Ms. Hodges' testimony came after the board's initial hearing and several hours of deliberations. The panel reconvened after being told that Ms. Hodges wasn't notified of the 1st hearing, at which Hameen and several of his supporters testified. The state parole board voted 3-2 last month to recommend that Gov. Ruth Ann Minner commute Hameen's sentence to life in prison without parole. After the second hearing, the Board of Pardons concluded that Hameen had expressed true remorse for his crimes and made genuine attempts at rehabilitating himself and others. But the board said it could not overlook the fact that he killed two men and shot and seriously wounded 2 others, and it did not find sufficient justification to overturn a jury's unanimous recommendation that he be put to death.
A few hours later, bound by leather belts and taped to a gurney, he spoke his last words to Tara Hodges, then to his wife and mother. "Tara, I hope this brings you comfort and eases your pain some," Hameen, 37, said before the lethal drugs began flowing through his veins. "Mom and Shakeerah, I love you. I'll see you on the other side. That's all." Ms. Hodges told a handful of reporters that the execution closed a painful chapter in her family's life. "The nightmare, this chapter, is over," she said. "I wanted to know he was paying the price. This should have happened 10 years ago. I needed to see this happen to make sure he was really dead," Hodges said. "I hope it sends a message to people that you can't kill 1, 2 or 3 times and expect to get away with it," she said, referring to the fact that Hameen killed a man at age 17 before killing Hodges in 1991. Asked whether Hameen's last words brought her any comfort, Hodges replied, "It was meaningless to me. ... I felt comfort, not from what he said, but the act brought me some comfort. I hope this deters anybody who wants to commit a murder," she said. "We don't have to fear him anymore."