C/O S.H.A.P.E. Community Center, 3815 Live Oak, Houston, TX 77004
713-503-2633, Abolition.Movement@hotmail.com

July 10, 2006


Contact: Njeri Shakur 713-237-0357 or Gloria Rubac 713-503-2633



At 6:00 PM on Tuesday, July 11, in Huntsville, Texas, members of the Abolition Movement will be protesting the execution of Derrick Sean OBrien, a convicted participant in one of Houstons most well known murder cases.

O’Brien was one of six youths involved in the rape and murder of Jennifer Ertman, 14, and Elizabeth Pena, 16, on June 24, 1993. The girls were Waltrip High School students who were walking home from a pool party when they took a shortcut through a park and the 6 young men attacked them.

The Abolition Movement is opposed to all executions, regardless if the person is innocent or guilty. The state of Texas does not have the right or the moral authority to kill anyone, said activist Njeri Shakur.

As a mother of six girls, I can only extend my sympathy to the parents of Pena and Ertman. What happened to their daughters was truly a parents nightmare. But as an African in America I know first hand that the criminal justice system is fatally flawed with racism and class bias.

The Abolition Movement also stresses that the death penalty is not reversible. In just the last 19 months, newspaper reporters have uncovered that three innocent people have likely been executed by the state of Texas: Cameron Todd Willingham, Ruben Cantu, and Carlos DeLuna.

Since 1973, 123 people in 25 states have been released from death row for reasons of innocence. Eight of these exonerees were from the state of Texas.

We demand an immediate moratorium on executions in Texas. These three cases of innocence must be fully investigated. And we demand a state agency be formed to not only fully examine these cases, but the application of the death penalty in Texas. If newspaper reporters can uncover innocent people being put to death, we need a total revamping of the criminal justice system. Deluna, Cantu and Willingham were surely not the only innocent people sent to death, Shakur stated.


Share →

4 Responses to TDPAM Press Advisory on Execution of Derrick O’Brien

  1. Ray Stack says:

    I think it is absolutely pathetic and heartless for anyone to even CONSIDER playing the ever-so-tired race card in the case of Sean Derrick O’Brien. He was put to death in Huntsville yesterday, and is now beginning the eternal sentence of burning in hell for the sick and evil crimes against two Houston teenage girls. There is NO question that he was indeed guilty of the crime. For you to even THINK of implying that he was arrested simply because of his race makes my blood boil. This pathetic excuse for a human life had shown he was capable of murder prior to the Pena/Ertman killings, and even BRAGGED about it to anyone who would listen. He also confessed to both sets of murders in hopes that it would somehow save his own life. He failed miserably. I’m so sick of African Americans playing their pathetic song every time a black man is arrested in America. This is a form of racism in itself, the implication being that only black men are innocent of any crime they are charged with. Why don’t you look at the obvious instead of your own prejudices toward police and the judicial system. For every person who is actually CONVICTED of a crime, there are hundereds more who get away scott-free with murder. YOU could be the next victim of someone who should have been locked up years ago. Think about your own children and family. Instead of trying to stand up for this sick individual and his co-horts, you might want to thank God that you don’t have to wake up day after day like the Ertman and Pena families, with the realization that your innocent daughter is never coming home. SHAME on you for your lack of empathy for these families. And shame on you for playing the same race card that actually got a guilty man, OJ Simpson, off the hook for an equally brutal crime.

  2. psonica says:

    Keep up the good work. thnx!

  3. Rainbow says:

    I am sick and tired of reading how O’Brien bragged about the crime he partook. It is not true.

    He didn’t brag about anything. O’Brien is not a victim in this case, but he did have a sad past. He was a young alcoholic & drug addict. It didn’t justify him to kill, but this story has another sad side as well. Media never writes a line about O’Brien’s past and forgets to meantion his three suicide attempts in jail after he realized what had happened.

    O’Brien previously expressed deep guilt, shame and remorse for the harm and pain he caused to everyone.

    May Jennifer Ertman & Elisabeth Pena rest in peace.

    May Sean O’Brien find peace.

  4. BSMM says:

    Unbelievable that we STILL have to hear these “racist” or “unfair” comments from people that actually live here in America today!!! These young men BRUTALLY raped, beat and KILLED 2 innocent young girls and you think they deserve ANYTHING??? THAT is what I would call Racist!!! I’m not sure which is worse….. The young men that commited these horrible crimes or the people that actually feel like they should have had more rights after commiting them! What a twisted world you must live in. Our judicial system may have flaws (show me one that doesn’t) and may not be perfect, however it would STILL be considered much better than many other countries and what they have to offer. Maybe all the people that feel this is such an unjust and unfair country and/or system should move to one of them and live happily ever after!!! I am a firm believer in the statement of “If you don’t like it here…. LEAVE”! What is keeping you here? I’m sick and tired of hearing about what this country OWES people or what people are NOT getting!!! How about you stop and think about what you DO get and what you DO have to be thankful for! One thing would be to realize that because of our judicial system…. we don’t have these criminals running around the streets (if we can help it) to harm others as well and we are no longer spending our hard-earned dollars to keep them in our jails where they are fed 3 meals a day, clothed and given shelter over their heads for free! I’m a single working mom and I know that I for one can use my dollars on more important things such as my own childrens needs and their futures that they will hopefully be able to have with the likes of these criminals no longer on the streets to diminish their chance of living a happy normal life!!
    As for the death penalty….It is a harsh punishment for harsh crimes committed by those that are being justly served. If these individuals are truely repentful and sorry for their sins…..then I’m sure that God above will grant them their final forgiveness, but that is for our God to do, not me and not you!!!
    May these girls and their families have the peace that they deserve and may this send a message to all of the future criminals that think they can get away with such things!!!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: