During a Gov. Rick Perry reelection campaign in the 90s, The Texas Forensic Science Commission, acting on a reexamination by the foremost arson scientist in America, Gerald Hurst, produced the so-called Beyler report, which said that the arson findings that led to the conviction and execution of Cameron Todd Willingham were based on "folklore."
|Logo by Patricia Turner for the Texas Moratorium Network|
John Lentini, Arson Expert:
The Beyler report is point for point a confirmation a confirmation of the original Hurst report that all 20 of the indicators were wrong. The State of Texas executed a man for a crime that they couldn't prove was really a crime and the evidence said "This is an accidental fire." And if it was an accidental fire, it doesn matter how many posters of Iron Maiden Cameron Rodd Willingham had on his wall or Led Zepplin or whether he liked to play darts or drink beer or whether he smacked his wife around. It only matters that the fire was not really a set fire.Sam Bassett, former chairman, Texas Forensic Science Commission, fired by Gov. Rick Perry:
"If we make a mistake, are we going to learn from it or are we going to sweep it under the rug and act like nothing happened?"