The toughest questions that Andre’s case presents, however, are not political in nature but moral. As a society, we want justice for the victims of his horrific crime. But what if Andre is not capable of understanding right from wrong or of comprehending why he is facing execution? Conversely, if the death penalty is not intended for someone who cuts out the hearts of two children, then for whom is it meant? At the center of this dilemma is Andre himself, who, now almost thirty, is presently too mentally ill to be housed on death row. For the past four years, he has been confined to a special psychiatric prison facility, where he remains indefinitely. All of which raises perhaps the most difficult question of all: What should be done with Andre Thomas?See prior, related Grits posts:
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
'Trouble in Mind'
A story by Brandi Grissom at Texas Monthly with the same title as this post tells the horrifying story of Andre Thomas, a schizophrenic capital murderer who plucked out both of his own eyes and ate them. An excerpt can't do it justice so read the whole thing, but this passage sums up the big picture question.