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Anthony Leroy PIERCE

 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 
 
 
Classification: Murderer
Characteristics: Robbery
Number of victims: 2
Date of murders: August 4, 1977 / August 1979
Date of arrest: August 4, 1977
Date of birth: July 20, 1959
Victims profile: Fred Johnson, 40 (restaurant manager) / Edward King, 37 (death row inmate)
Method of murder: Shooting / Stabbing with homemade knife
Location: Harris County, Texas, USA
Status: Sentenced to death on March 20, 1978
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Yatombi Ikei
aka Anthony Leroy Pierce

Anthony Pierce
# 000587
TDCJ-ID Polunsky Unit
3872 FM 350 South
Livingston, TX 77351
USA

The Case

Case No: 267685
Date of the Crime: August 4, 1977
Date of Conviction: February of 1987
Sentenced to death for capital murder/ robbery murder

Introduction

In all honesty, I do not know who did what to whom, whereas I came upon something that had nothing to do with me. So, I went about my business. My name surfaced when a non-witness suggested it to two "supposed" eye-witnesses who initially stated that they saw my older brother, who was in California at the time, run in the back of some apartment buildings. What the prosecution attempted to do was place me at the scene when it was shown that I was at a bar involved in a fight. These "supposed" eye-witnesses were said to have been with two other at the time. These two men's names are Nellis Brooks and Nelson Warfield, and these two men I need to step forward and help clear up the whereabouts of the Sanders brothers.

Synopsis of My Case and The Facts Therein

My name is Yatombi Ikei (pronounced Ya-Tom-Be/ I-Key), born Anthony L. Pierce, July 20, 1959, in Harris County, an annexation of the City of Houston, Texas. On August 4, 1977, I was arrested and charged with the robbery/ murder of the manager of a fast food restaurant (making my eighteen years of age the youngest (then) to receive the death penalty by an all white jury. I have never been to prison before, though I was placed in a youth facility. A sealed order was placed on my file by a juvenile court judge once I turned 18 years of age. However, this order was violated and one juvenile act was illegally used as an extraneous factor during the punishment phrase to get me here (even though I have since been tried three times for this same case), I was denied every opportunity to be fairly represented all three trials. Below are some of the facts in this case that are backed up by the records, which I truly believe will mysteriously disappear once I am murdered by the state of Texas, if I do not get the type of representation I need to bring these facts to the forefront. They are as follows:

  • As listed in claim (Petition at 101), I was illegally arrested. I was neither taken before a magistrate, read any rights, never served an arrest warrant, nor was there probable cause to arrest me (due to a non-witness coming on the scene 15 minutes after the crime had happened.)

  • The Grand Jury assembly was illegally assembled, nor did the Grand Jury hear from witnesses (either for or against me), reviewed the evidence collected by the police department before issuing a sealed indictment charge against me (as required by the law), because if they had, the Grand Jury would have found that:

  • There was no probable cause to arrest me (as also required by the law), due to a non-witness coming upon the scene 15 minutes after the crime had happened

  • Several eye-witnesses identified someone else other than myself as being the perpetrator

  • The time I was said to have committed this offence, it was established that I was three miles away involved in a fight between myself and another man.

  • Ballistic tests conducted on my person and clothing (reportedly to have been worn during the crime) by the Houston Police Department Crime Lab came up negative for gun-powder residue.

  • Fingerprints taken from the crime scene did not match mine.

  • A trace metal test was also conducted and thus came up negative as well

  • Records from the Houston Police Department would have verified that I could not have come into the place in question on five different occassions, prior to the day of the crime, and threaten to kill the deceased, because I was in the custody of the Harris County Sheriff's Department on an unrelated case that was later dismissed, and

  • had the audio portion of the optometer readers videorecording of the place I was at from the different routes (including the factfinders during trial proceedings), they would have had the full opportunity to see that I could not have gotten from point A to point B at the time it was stated this crime took place.

     

    • (#107) The evidence at trial did not prove Pierce's guilt to a moral certainty and was insufficient to support his conviction. The conviction was almost solely based on questionable identification by witnesses at the murder scene. Two of the witnesses allegedly saw the murder through a reflection in the window of the restaurant and identified someone other than Pierce as the perpetrator. Other witnesses either could not identify or incorrectly identified items of clothing recovered from Pierce when he was arrested a short time after the murder. Further, there were inconsistencies in the testimonies of the witnesses with regard to the murder scene. Pierce also notes that trial counsel referred to fingerprints recovered from the restaurant counter that did not match Pierce's. No gun was recovered nor were traces of gun powder residue on Pierce's hands.

    • (#110) The state failed to disclose material exculpatory evidence. Two witnesses were paid by the police for their identification of Mr. Pierce as the murderer. Another witness, Olester Jackson, was not charged with an offence in exchange for his testimony against Mr. Pierce. Arrest records of the Houston Police Department would have shown that Mr. Pierce was not fingerprinted before a trace metal test was done on his hands.

    • (#128) Mr. Pierce was denied a fair sentencing hearing, because of prosecutorial misconduct, namely the prosecutor's extensive use of false and inadmissible evidence concerning Mr. Pierce's juvenile record. Specifically the prosecutor surprised the defense at trial with information that Mr. Pierce had purportedly been charged with arson, simple assault, various burglaries, aggravated robbery and robbery. No documentary evidence of any such acts or charges were offered and virtually all of these allegations were false. Such charges as Mr. Pierce in fact had as a juvenile were dismissed for lack of evidence or were invalid for various reasons.

    • (#146) Mr. Pierce was denied the effective assistance of counsel at trial. Defense counsel failed to properly impeach witnesses with available information. Further, defense counsel failed to show that Mr. Pierce could not have committed the crime, because someone much taller than Mr. Pierce had to have shot the gun, based on the angel of the bullet wound.

    • (#186) The trial court improperly admitted evidence of purported extraneous offence of Mr. Pierce. Witness Elray Mosley said that there had been conflicts between Mr. Pierce and the victim in the restaurant at various times before the day of the murder. Their conflicts could not have occurred, because Mr. Pierce was in custody at the time they supposedly happened. The district attorney's office should have known about this having access to records regarding Mr. Pierce's custody.

    • (#206) Admission to invalid and unreliable evidence concerning Mr. Pierce prior unadjudicated criminal acts, many from juvenile years and some from his time on death row, violated Mr. Pierce's right to a fair sentencing hearing. Mr. Pierce challenges the accuracy of the testimony of various witnesses.

    The original state habeas corpus petition filed on my behalf by attorneys out of the Defunct Resource Center, sat in state district court for 11 years before an appointee out of a particular district court, amend it in regards to a pending issue before the Supreme Court, that I did not particularly wanted raised, because I fear that doing so will take precedent over more serious issues that have never been properly addressed by the appeals court in Austin, Texas. I had no prior knowledge that my state habeas corpus petition was being amended, because the attorneys did this behind my back and as a resort, my state habeas corpus petition was affirmed by the Appeals Court in Austin, Texas (in an unpublished ruling citing 48 plus claims were never addressed). As it stands now, another has been appointed to some or so other cases, with four already resulting in executions. Furthermore, I am illegally forced under the 1996 Antiterrorism Legislation that streamlines the appeals process. This is illegal, because this law is not retroactive, but applies only to cases that were tried after 1996. My state habeas corpus petition has been in court since 1990, well before this new legislation went into effect.

    I have listed six points above as a small sample of the abuse and impropriety surrounding my case. I am sealing our legal firm or anyone with legal expertise who is willing to fight on my behalf and to expose the abuse and neglect that has led to my wrongful conviction and suffering for the last decades. Anyone with a sincer heart for justice and a strong desire to see an innocent man set free, my invitation is for you to join me in a solidarity and truth, to help set me free. Please, do not allow me to become another statistic of how a poor but innocent man was railroaded through this broken legal system and wrongfully executed. I invite anyone who is interested to know more about my case to look up my case and discover for yourself that I am an innocent man sitting here on death row, wrongfully sentenced to die. Even a superficial examination of the facts and circumstances of my case will bring forth this truth.

  • "After-Thought"

    To give a little insight concerning the issues raised in my case is two-fold, I will explain:

    If you study the issues raised by the court appointed attorneys on my behalf, you will see that

    • the issues amount to nothing more than conjectures on one hand, because they merely mention procedural violations, no protocol whatsoever.

    • makes mention on actual facts that could easily be shown, yet elaborated less on those facts, and

    • makes extensive arguments on issues that does nothing but enable a continuation of the injustice this case received.

    While the state's arguments only high-light various points raised by the court appointed attorneys, while totally ignoring other issues that were briefly raised for two reasons:

    • Those procedural violations actually took place, and

    • no extensive arguments were made that required an extensive response.

    What this simply states is the fact that these court appointed attorneys are simply a part of the entire system and therefore operate on a perimeter that excludes the poor and destitute. Their actual existence is to give the impression that the system works on a fair arena when they make little challenges against the injustice these cases receive, as well as challenge the violation of oath of office admitting fabricated, distorted and perjured evidence by those sworn to uphold the law. In fact, the majority of these court appointed attorneys are bound by some "unified code" that no case they represent gets challenged on the merits and/or facts along, nor will such court appointed attorney attack the practitioners, who are sworn to uphold the law, for violating the law when it is shown that they intentionally withhold favorable evidence from the accused, using knowing perjured testimony, fabricating the facts of a case and/or misleading the jury among other things. They do this, because they are all a part of this entire process that, both, manufactures and/or uses the law to deny relief through such usage as "procedural default", "procedurally barred", "abusive writ", etc. This process even protects these court appointed attorneys from being cited for being ineffective assistance to their clients and thus increase the possibility of being put to death all because the system does not want to be wrong nor corrected.

    Race also plays a big part of who gets what form of justice, including poverty. I cannot seem to find any law firm willing to take my case pro bono, because being truthfully, black life in America, particularly in the South, is regarded as worthless, which I hope none of you reading this feel the same way. Thirty years ago, I was offered 10 years probation to lie on somebody else as somebody was allowed to do on me. I wonder, if you think a man is guilty who could have pled out on this case on different occasions. The bottom line is that if you think I am entitled to have an honest review of all the facts of my case, then please, whatever assistance you deem necessary towards this endeaver would be highly appreciated. Thank you for your time into reading this.

    Update on the Opinion by the Court of Appeals

    As I was rereading these files that IIPPI is putting up for review and hopefully support, I realized that most of you, who are taking the time to read this, have no real understanding in these laws or the logic of the Appeals Court's wisdom in deciding these particular set of issues. So, I felt it my duty to break down the pro's and con's of the game, so each one of you would have a clearer understanding how the court's decision was reached.

    To begin with, there was a recent article that came out in the San Antonio Express newspaper denoting how this very Court of Criminal Appeals are placing lawyers on our appeals whose filing abysmal appeals on our behalf. Yet, the court is still affirming these cases, after acknowledging this fact, just so these cases could be shuffled right on through the system and thus expose of while yet continue appointing these attorneys to our cases who are filing these inept appeals.

    In the first place, I plead "not guilty". My entire case surrounded misidentification, yet if you judge my case behind the wisdom of the Appeals Court you would conclude that this misidentification involved another case that had nothing to do with the intitial case, which was false. The witness Cooks, never identified me in a line-up and the Sanders brothers identified someone else and only changed their identity after a non-witness suggested my name to them, where the other witness Charles was not all that sure, plus there were two other people involved that this court never bothered to mention. Why? Because their involvement in this case threw the court's wisdom in the trash.

    What the court did cite was that the attorney, though charged to me as the appellant, did not challenge the evidence in the case. So, the court did not have to address the evidence in the case, which indicate to the average person that establishing guilt was never an issue in this case when that is not true. In fact, each one of these "supposed" eye-witnesses gave several different statements, which I have been trying, in vain, to obtain. (Mind you these statements were given right after the incident had happened.) So, the architects reconstruction of the line-up proceeding and the psychologist's testimonies were pertinent to this case and therefore their testimonies were improperly excluded by the trial judge, who is now deceased.

    As for the prospective jurors (i.e. venire persons), there were inconsistencies in their previous statements prior to this court's showing which the court uses to justify it's decision. They should have all been challenged for cause. What this means is that, they could not consider the full range of punishment nor consider issuing a lesser form of punishment once they had found someone guilty of an intentional murder, as required by law. The issue involves the distance of two separate incidence. The time it was reported that this incident took place, evidence was offered to show that I was somewhere else, plus the attorney, in addition to introducing this fact, attempted to show the jury that an indictment was served on me merely on the advice of a prosecuting attorney not by any facts, just as the indictment was served on me in th initial case. What is being shown in this opinion is a brief summery of the facts of this case the Court of Appeals decided to justify their position on denying me relief.

    On the other hand, if you read the attorney's appeal brief and see how he mentioned other factors in this case, yet only extensively argued the voir dire, jury selections, one could see that this over-sight was intentional, because the issues he raised only merit a reversal, as this case was twice reversed already on the exact same issue before the court now. So, what is shown is the only duty these court appointed attorneys are obligated to do, seek only a reversal not a dismissal. Yet again, if you look at the opening argument of the attorney's appeal brief, you will see that every procedural law relating to this case was violated, which along merits a dismissal in itself. What is happening is that these courts are playing politics, whereas their blaming the neglect of raising timely facts on us instead of the ineffectiveness of these court appointed attorneys, while denying us relief at the same time. This results to nothing more than pre-meditated, cleverly orchestrated means to carry out these state sanctioned murders through a hypocritical showing of administrating justice. Thus, my fate lies upon this very dilemma unless something changes it. I hope this helps shed some light on your understanding regarding the issues in this case. Thank you for your time and hopefully your support.

    If you believe I am a fraud

    My grandfather was killed by a drunk driver who did not even get probation and my younger brother was killed by a man I think involved a woman. Yet, his indictment was thrown out due to an illegal member sat in on his Grand Jury, whereas the case itself was never sort after again since the man claimed another verging of the facts regarding the incident. In each instance, the state's outlook of the social, economic and racial make-up of the victims was not important enough to pursue, because in this country one life is held sacred over another.

    What I would do, if I saw the perpetrator on the internet speaking about his/her situation:

    I would gather as many facts as I can and see for myself, if there is any credence behind what this person is claiming, and if the facts either support or give me reason to cast doubts towards this person's guilt then I would make every available effort to let these facts be known.

    Most people do not know that the death penalty itself is played off of emotions and afterwards, fueled by hatred, rather justified or not, because close scrutiny of most of these cases would reveal that some of these cases do not meet the death penalty clause.

    I had once invited the family, via an article, to help me obtain all the files and documentations in this case and see, after a thorough examination of the facts therein, if they are still convinced without any doubts that I am responsible for their grief, I would drop my appeal so that they could satisfy their conscious and quest for blood vengeance. (For the record, I was being considered and/or offered probation and life imprisonment, for which I refused...)

    I thank you for your time and consideration in this matter.

    Yatombi Ikei

     

     

     
     
     
     
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