I'm not completely against the death penalty, but I believe it ought to be used extremely sparingly. John Muhammad would be my ideal candidate for the death penalty. Nevertheless, there's something not quite right with our judicial system that has affected his trial. DUring the first part of the trial, he maintains his innocence. If he does anything that looks like
remorse during this phase, he's gonna get convicted as remorse is a sign of guilt. (If you don't feel guilty, you won't have remorse.)
Then in the penalty phase, he has to turn around and display remorse, whether or not he plead
guilty. In this case, he had plead
not guilty, but now to get a favorable outcome he has to act remorseful, which the the exact opposite of what he was supposed to do in the first phase of the trial.
Don't know how I'd rectify that dichotomy. Though perhaps in my own judgment, the death penalty should only be applied in cases where the crime is so heinous that remorse doesn't even come in question. If you would let the guy have life in prison if he's remorseful, it's not a good candidate for the death penalty in the first place.
Still think he should be executed, as in my opinion, he should get the death penalty regardless of his state of remorse. This crime was heinous. Have some serious issues with the conduct of the trial, so even that's no an absolute judgment. It wasn't fair, due to the way interrogations were done on transfer of custody from the Federal government to the State of Virginia, and the introduction of evidence about crimes for which Muhammad was not previously convicted. And I also don't like cherry-picking jurisdictions either. Further information might affect my judgment of guilt.