Compassion for killers like William Castillo is misplaced |

Compassion for killers like William Castillo is misplaced

John DiMambro
Appeal Publisher

Call it injecticide, if you will. You can also call it blatant preservation of judicial vanity. The sudden interception of convicted murderer William Castillo’s execution and the hold on all other scheduled executions in Nevada is a move born of political correctness and not of genuine humane conscience. And why should it be?

Here was a man who bludgeoned a defenseless and helpless 86-year-old woman in her home after being hired by her for roof repairs in 1995. The spineless and bloodless punk found cause to use a tire iron to whack down the frail body of Isabelle Berndt. A tire iron. Think about the thin skin that barely covers the bones of an 86-year-old. Now think about the thick metal of a tire iron crashing down with brutish animalism on that body. On that head. Pounding. Cracking. Splitting. Splattering.

Sound sick? Damn right! Want to hear something sicker? It was at the behest of a plea by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) that the Nevada Supreme Court halted the execution because the U.S. Supreme Court decided on Sept. 25 to reevaluate the “humane” process of lethal injections. The consent of the Nevada Supreme Court surprised me. Shocked me.

For the meantime, the Nevada Supreme Court has laid down its arms in a sort of surrender until the U.S. Supreme Court determines just how “humane” all parts of the three-drug lethal injection process are to our dear inhumane and inhuman criminals on death row. I believe our federal law has shot up with a lethal injection of its own. The concern, which is needling and probing death by lethal injection more so than the needles that shoot the drugs through the bloodstream during execution, is the time the drugs may require to take full effect.

The longer I live, the more I know and the less I understand. Nevada has donned the veil of sainthood for a devil’s reject. There are those who believe that the interception of an execution 90 minutes before its scheduled time is the greatest punishment one might receive, since the inmate has already resigned to death and must now recondition the mindset to live with the psychological demons until the courts say when. But I don’t believe that.

I believe that if we have proof that the lethal injection has phases of unmanageable pain that is curtained by the outwardly appearance of unconsciousness, then why ruin a good recipe? There is something cathartic about intense suffering being inflicted in the criminal creature just minutes before dying, especially when the face can no longer reveal the hell-fire punishment that the body is suffering. That containment of excruciating pain in the final hour is like the fury of judgment day compressed into just a moment of time – ungodly unbearable pain.

Did the Nevada Supreme Court, as an ACLU lawyer suggests, make their decision to sidestep the bare wire that lay exposed for our state to be being possibly “… the last state to execute someone (by) using an unconstitutional method …?” I believe so. And they did it with a constitution of their own that defies what justice is supposed to mean.

It is said that some people see a bright light while lying on their death bed. I think the murderers and rapists of our world should see light, in the form of white heat intensity pumping through their motionless bodies, numbed by the first injection, as the brain signals every ounce of unremitting pain and suffering to what is left in balance of the still-conscious mind.

• John DiMambro is publisher of the Appeal. You can reach him at