Christopher Pittman was 12 years old when he fatally shot both of his grandparents, just before setting fire to their house. He was intoxicated with antidepressants.
After running away one night, state troopers picked him up and took him to an institutional facility for troubled kids. Whilst there, he was first prescribed Paxil for mild depression. When taken out of the facility by family members, he was taken to his grandparents, in the hope that the new atmosphere would help him. He was immediately taken off of Paxil by a new doctor, without a weaning process, and was prescribed Zoloft. Chris began to complain about side effects, including a burning sensation under his skin and difficulty sleeping. Instead of removing the new medication, the doctor doubled his dosage. Five days later, Chris committed the double murder. The doctor was never charged for malpractice, or his involvement in the murders. Instead, Chris was arrested, imprisoned for three years prior to his trial, tried in an adult court at age 15, found guilty of murder, and sentenced to 30 years imprisonment.
His right to a speedy trial, as guaranteed by the Sixth Amendment, was ignored. No reasonable person would consider holding a 12-year-old for three years awaiting trial as constitutional. For that reason alone, the court should have let Chris go, and in less corrupt times, it would have. However, it was much easier for prosecutors to get a conviction against a 15-year-old, who looked more criminal after spending 3 years behind bars, than it would have been to try a 12-year-old in adult court. We believe all of it was carefully orchestrated by the local court and law enforcement officials, as a way of illegally and unconstitutionally destroying a 12-year-old, who no jury would condemn. This case is the embodiment of everything that is wrong with the juvenile justice system.
In 2005, the Supreme Court (Roper vs. Simmons) banned the execution of children, because such an act ignores the differences between children and adults, and the potential corrigibility of young offenders. Based upon the spirit of that ruling, it should likewise be illegal to try any child as an adult, because such trials frequently accomplish equivalent punishments.
|South Carolina Attorney General Henry McMaster|
Chris has now been incarcerated for almost nine years, and was just granted a new trial by Circuit Judge Roger Young. The judge said that Chris' attorneys were ineffective, and a plea deal was never given as an option. Upon learning these events, the Attorney General of South Carolina, Henry McMaster began interfering with the due process of the court. He has made it his personal mission to prevent Chris from getting a new trial. We have to ponder about what sort of person would deny somebody a new trial, after the inmate was convicted under all those mitigating circumstances involving his responsibility. Perhaps more prudent would be to question what McMaster has to lose if a new trial does take place. After all, this is not the sort of trial that a State's Attorney General would normally become involved in, so we are pondering about who is pulling the strings.
As a result, we did some digging into Henry McMaster and found that he has a record of accepting dubious "donations". He hired lawyers with state money, and then later received donations from them whilst in his employment. When caught, he returned the money while maintaining that he "did nothing wrong".
We would like to request that all of our readers express their outrage toward Henry McMaster, and pass the word along about Chris Pittman, so that he may at last be given a fair trial.
We are also on the lookout for the prosecutor's guide that the pharmaceutical companies give to prosecutors to help them ensure maximum convictions for people who have had pharmaceutically-induced, psychotic, violent episodes. The purpose of this guide is to ensure that few precedent setting victories take place, and that the effects of these drugs remain out of the media. Pharmaceutical company lawyers have actually become involved in such cases directly, and have threatened kids saying "shut up or else", as happened during the Columbine shooting lawsuit that was dropped.