Man gets death for 9/11 murderous rampage
A Phoenix man was sentenced to death Thursday for murdering an Indian immigrant outside his gasoline station in an alleged hate crime just days after the September 11, 2001, attacks. Frank Roque, 44, faces death by lethal injection for gunning down Balbir Singh Sodhi, a Sikh, who wore a turban and a beard as part of his beliefs and apparently was mistaken for an Arab. Prosecutors argued that Sodhi’s murder on September 15, 2001, was fueled by racism and hate and carried out by a man with a long-time drinking problem. Defense attorneys argued that Roque was mentally ill and pushed over the edge by the attacks. The jury deliberated for six hours before sentencing Roque to death in the case, which attracted international attention in the wake of the September 11 attacks. The shooting prompted India to call on the U.S. government to take steps to prevent assaults on Sikhs living in America. Sodhi, 49, who came to the United States in 1988 from a small village in Punjab, was one of several Sikhs attacked in America after apparently being mistaken as possible supporters of Saudi-born militant Osama bin Laden, believed to be behind the September 11 attacks. Roque, who still faces sentencing on other charges stemming from two other shootings of people of Afghani and Lebanese descent on the day of the murder, becomes the 127th person on Arizona’s death row.
Better yet, why not send him to Afghanistan, or the NWFP. He wouldn’t last ten minutes there.
Posted by: Rafael 2003-10-10