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Family of slain girl angry at Strickland for sparing life of her killer

Published: Mon, November 15, 2010 @ 7:40 p.m.

GIRARD — The father, aunt and uncle of 3-year-old Jessica Ballew expressed outrage at Gov. Ted Strickland’s decision to grant clemency to her killer.

“He got away with murder,” Jessica’s aunt, Connie Ressler of Girard, said of Sidney Cornwell.

Ressler and Jessica’s father, Virgil Ballew of Girard, said they believe the governor would not have granted clemency if it was not for his political lame-duck status.

“Now, he has nobody to answer to,” Ballew said today.

“We can’t believe that he would stoop to that level and give clemency to someone who’s a baby-killer. I mean we’re outraged over it. It’s unbelievable that he took her death so lightly,” Ressler added.

“There is a higher justice than Ted Strickland,” Ressler said, with her brother, Virgil, concurring.

Jessica was shot to death June 11, 1996, on the city’s North Side. Cornwell was sentenced to die by execution after a 1997 trial, but the governor granted him clemency. Cornwell will spend the rest of his life in prison.

For the complete story, read Tuesday's Vindicator and Vindy.com


11970mach1(1005 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

And they all probably voted for him.

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2Lifes2Short(3877 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

I feel for this family. That is like a slap in the face. How in the world can Strickland live with himself. Unreal.

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3Reader(126 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

May Jessica be resting in peace and sending peace down to her family during this tough time. Maybe the death penalty would have been the easy way out for this low life slime ball. Is it possible that living in a small cell like a caged animal is the better punishment?

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4Lifes2Short(3877 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

Nope, he should be on a slab at the morgue right now.

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5Ianacek(909 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

Is 14 years on death row , wondering if today will be your last day , not enough punishment ? I feel for the family of this girl , who would now be 17.
The death penalty, or lack of it , has no effect on crime rates . You only has to look at countries where the death penalty has been abolished since WWII to see that there was no explosion of crime thereafter . e.g, Canada abolished the death penalty in 1976 . If criminals really did respond rationally to the presence of a death penalty in Ohio & other US states , we would expect to see a reduction in murders in Ohio & a rise in Canada as intending murderers switched domicile ( albeit illegally ) to avoid the potential cost of their misdeeds . You would expect the US homicide rate to reduce as you approach the Canadian border . There is no correlation . In fact , the highest US homicide rates are often in the border
states & cities . Take Detroit. . If the death penalty was any deterrent , Detroit should have one of the lowest homicide rates in the USA .

Could there be other factors ?

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6Lifes2Short(3877 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

Again, he should be on a slab in the morgue.

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7Vicki(14 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

I wouldn't even take him to the morgue. Throw him in a hole, thats all he deserves

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