STANLEY 'TOOKIE' WILLIAMS EXECUTED
San Franciscans join Mirkarimi
at City Hall and San Quentin vigil
December 13, 2005
Stanley "Tookie" Williams was executed this morning
at San Quentin Prison, pronounced dead at 12:35 a.m.
The former Crips gang leader turned anti-gang crusader was 51-years-old.
Williams was strapped to a gurney and injected with a lethal
mixture of drugs in an execution protocol which began at 12:01
The process took longer than usual as technicians struggled for
more than ten minutes to find a vein in Williams' muscular left
Williams' friend Barbara Becnel mouthed "We love you"
from a small observation room, and Williams seemed to mouth the
words back, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Some 60 San Franciscans traveled to San Quentin on a bus secured
by Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi's office. Mirkarimi and San Francisco
Public Defender Jeff Adachi led the delegation.
They joined a crowd of from 2,000 to 5,000, according to various
"When we heard clemency was denied, I and my staff immediately
rented The Mexican bus and brought over 60 San Franciscans with
us to be here tonight. We came here to say, Governor Schwarzenegger
- you misguided fool," said Mirkarimi
District 5 Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi
"You were standing at the four-way intersection between
predictability and cowardliness, and where the streets meet between
bravery and vision, you chose poorly. You did what George W. would
"You are nothing but a roboton of right wing mediocrity.
"Tookie Williams is much more important to us alive than
Williams was sentenced to death in 1981 for gunning down convenience
store clerk Albert Owens, 26, at a 7-Eleven and killing Yen-I
Yang, 76, Tsai-Shai Chen Yang, 63, and the couple's daughter Yu-Chin
Yang Lin, 43, at the Los Angeles motel they owned. Williams claimed
at the time that he was innocent, though witnesses at the trial
said the Crips leader bragged about the murders, saying, "You
should have heard the way he sounded when I shot him."
Despite the claims from Williams and his supporters that he had
been redeemed while in prison - writing anti-gang children's books
and being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize - Governor Arnold
Schwarzenegger denied clemency.
Schwarzenegger explained his decision, "Is Williams' redemption
complete and sincere, or is it just a hollow promise? Stanley
Williams insists he is innocent and that he will not and should
not apologize or otherwise atone for the murders of the four victims
in this case. Without an apology and atonement for these senseless
and brutal killings there can be no redemption," the governor
Williams' advocates said his credibility in preaching to youth
about staying out of gangs was unmatched, but the Times said victims'
rights leaders painted him as a fraud for his failure to confess
to the crimes and refusal to formally cut ties with the Crips
by sharing his knowledge of the gang's inner workings with police.
Outside the prison walls, as the crowd was informed that Williams
was dead, angry shouts broke out and a man burned an American
flag, according to the Times.