Saturday, August 14, 2004

Todd Charles Boggess

North Carolina death row inmate Todd Charles Boggess was awarded a new trial by the North Carolina Supreme Court on Friday. According to the Supreme Court, there were problems with Boggess's jury from day one when the lower court allowed a juror on the panel who knew the victim's mother to remain. In addition, the Supreme Court found error with a jury instruction which implied to the jury that if they chose life in prison, Boggess might be paroled at some point. In North Carolina, a life prison term for a convicted first degree murder is automatically life without possibility of parole. This jury instruction issue is VERY similar to the issue which the New York Court of Appeals found improper. The instruction was different, but essentially, the effect was the same: the jury may be choosing death because they fear if they don't the defendant will someday be released on parole.

Man on death row gets new trial


Amanda Rivers Boggess said...

Todd Boggess is my ex-husband. I have a child with this man. I was married to him at the time of this murder and I believe him to be guilty. I loved him, yet I believe he should recieve the death penalty.

CarrieJ said...

I appreciate you posting. I imagine the whole ordeal has been difficult for you. My view on the death penalty does not turn on whether someone is guilty or not. Todd may indeed be guilty. Even if he is, I do not believe he should receive a death sentence. I don't believe ANYONE deserves a death sentence. Again, thank you for taking the time to post.

Anonymous said...

Todd Boggess is my cousin. Hello Amanda, I first met you a few months before the events in 1995 then saw you again at Mikes (Todds older brother) wedding. I hope your daughter is ok, the one Todd and yourself gave life to.

I agree with CarrieJ. Death Penalty is not the answer.
Some background: Todd and I basically grew up together - there's alot more to him than what he did in 1995.
Sure, he deserves jail for what he did. But, from a different perspective, life imprisonment is a harsher sentence. Who does the death penalty punish when there is a family affected by state sponsered homicide? Its pure revictimization: if NC kills my cousin, there is equal grounds of conduct between Todd and the State of NC. One more thing: if Todd dies, he will have on his death certificate the reason for death: "Homicide".
Think about that.

Anonymous said...

Todd deserves to pay for what he did. And to pay with his life is only fair. You can not go around thinking that the laws of this country to not apply to you!

CarrieJ said...

Todd should absolutely be punished if he is guilty. It sounds like he is, but he's been awarded a new trial, so we have to see what happens there. However, even if he is guilty, he should not be put to death. The death penalty in North Caolina may be the law in North Carolina but that does not mean it is a good law. Those guilty of certain murders should spend the rest of their days in prison, working hard, and remebering why they were put there. However, the United States and the State of North Carolina should really be more dignified than a capital murderer. We are an upstanding society, but yet we murder our own citizens and call it "justice." Who does death really punish anyway? Once the individual is dead, presumably he or she doesn't realize it. The true torture of the death penalty is the day-to-day rotting in a 9 ft cell for 23 hours a day wondering what day will be your day to die and the certainly excruciating few hours before they hook you up, puts you on display, and inject absolute poison into you.

What is the theory of the US Justice System...punishment, rehabilitation, deterrence? Some say it is a bit of all three. Well, the thing about the death penalty is that its been shown to NOT be a deterrent to murder. Furthermore, if someone knows they are going to die any day, what incentive do they have to become better people? So, for the most part, the death penalty does not encourage rehabilitation. I guess that means that in death penalty states, its all about punishment. In other words, its all about vengence. See, I think human beings are worth more than that, not matter what they've done. I think human beings should be given the chance to change. Many many of them will not, but some will. Its those "some" that deserve the chance. The others can just sit in their cells and stew in their own misery for 50 years or so. Those that rehabilitate will still remain in prison for the punishment and deterrence parts of their imprisonment, but their view will be a bit different because they've changed at least a part of it. Hopefully, those people will then make a difference in the life of someone else.

E said...

Todd Boggess should receive the death penalty!!He should suffer just like Danny did! Why should my tax dollars pay to house this man in prison?! And, they should have never let Melanie out....the system has failed whne it comes to these two MURDERERS!!!!

Anonymous said...

"your tax dollars" are being spent more to kill him than to incarcerate him.
Its pretty unanimous that Danny did not deserve to die. Its also pretty unanimous that Todd's actions were unlawful. That being said, he deserves to be in jail for the rest of his life versus an easy way out with the Death Penalty.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I grew up with Danny Pence. He was best friends with my brother. I was only 12 years old when MY friend was MURDERED. I along with other friends of mine and his immediate family went through HELL because of TODD BOGGESS. Danny Pence had NO enemies. Damn, he was a seventeen year old kid. He was the type of guy who would do anything for his friends and family. When they went to trial for the first time I was VERY happy that they gave him the death sentence. Now that I am older (25) I believe Todd should sit his SORRY ASS in jail for the rest of his life. I will gladly pay my tax dollars to keep him in jail. As for Melanie Grey........ she will end up back in prison. When they released her from prison her rap shit was over TWO HUNDRED pages long! She should not have been released! But I am a firm believer in the saying " What Goes Around Comes Around". She will get what she deserves. Some way, some how.

Jonelle Reyes said...

todd boggess WAS my cousin in law. i was 15 or 16 when he was arrested. i never met him in person because of being in some trouble myself while he and my cousin were together, but i know enough about him to know he most certainly does deserve the death penalty. to todd's cousin (anonymous, huh?), of course there's more to todd than the murder he committed in 1995. there's more to everyone in the world than one single action that they've committed. i mean, think about it. lots of people really liked ted bundy. he was charming and handsome and an all around likeable guy. but that doesn't change the fact that he liked to murder young girls and have sex with their corpses. you follow me? now i know ted bundy is a rare and extreme case to use as an example but the same concept applies to todd. the fact that there's more to todd than the part of him that caused him to commit homicide doesn't get him a second chance. thats like if someone shot someone point blank in the face but then their cousin saying 'oh but wait, he likes puppies and he loves his mother'. does that change the fact that he's a murderer? of course not. think about it. and please don't think i'm being coldhearted about this - i'm sorry that todd chose to put your family and mine through this pain.

to carriej. there is no 'may be guilty' about it. todd confessed to murdering danny and gave a statement that included intricate details about the murder. he in fact found the event at least somewhat humorous. and you think he doesn't deserve to die? what kind of good do you suppose life in prison would do him or society? its not like he's sitting around all day thinking about and/or feeling remorse for his crime. people adapt very well to life changes, and prison is very much a society all on its own. after 12 years i'm quite sure he's more than used to his life in prison. in a few years he will have been incarcerated for longer than he was alive before he was arrested. in my opinion, the only part of life that people do not adjust to easily is the fact that they're going to die. its bad enough for most just knowing it'll happen eventually. i think it would be agonizing sitting there knowing for sure that its coming soon if not knowing the exact time and date and how its going to go down. to me the anticipation of that would be worse than spending the next 100 years in prison.
it is my opinion that todd boggess does deserve to be executed for his crime. since this blog was posted todd has won an appeal and is up for a retrial. he has for the time being been removed from death row and was placed in general population.
my cousin and her then infant daughter lived with me and my mom during the time of todd's arrest. i remember how devestated she was to find out. they were living with us, by the way, because todd had thrown them out and run off with some girl; that melanie that was mentioned i'd imagine. my cousin loved him even though he treated her badly and cheated on her. i never could understand what she saw in him even before all this. i'm sure he does have some good qualities but on the whole i believe he is not a good person. i believe he deserves the death sentence not only for the state he left danny's family in, but for his now teenaged daughter who is now old enough to understand why she doesn't have a dad and for my cousin who has had to struggle that much harder because of his actions and the angst and heartbreak his one selfish act caused. i hope he recieves the death penalty again and this time i hope there isn't even any possibility of an appeal.

Eric said...

To Jonelle, this is Todd's cousin again. I am anonymous because, unlike yourself, I am not a blogger and have no need to create an account. However, if you feel like it, my name is Eric West and I can be reached at You'll need to take out 'remove_this' from the email. How is that for anonymous?
Ok, it is funny how you call yourself a former cousin-in-law. That is quite a stretch of the relationship tree, a leap to the center of the arena like a cat in a doghouse. I wouldnt have the nerve to even declare any affiliation.
Nonetheless, you want some part of this. Fine. Many still do. It is like one huge horrific soap opera.
When Todd grew up, the only attention he got was when he did something wrong or when his father was feeling a little horny.
Now, think before you speak. Todd's murder of Danny is no excuse for his childhood torment.
Let me digress a bit:
Did you know in the Summer of 1995, my mother, a friend and I took a trip to North Carolina to see my aunt (Todd's mom) who was staying with that SOB Mike Boggess (Todd's dad)? I say this because it was such a pivotal moment in Todd's fate. When we left to come back home, unpacked our car, there was a case of Todd's in our trunk. Ask Amanda if she remembers the time Todd left to drop her and the baby off at the train station? It was then, that we left to come back to PA unaware that Todd had been planning a return to PA. It turns out Todd had plans to come back to Pennsylvania because he wanted to get away from the situation: that meant abandoning Amanda and the Baby, yes. That meant, perhaps, that Todd would have been away from his mother, brother and the man fresh out of jail for sodomizing his brother and himself.
What excuse is this for killing someone? None. But, I think it shows a common struggle people face within a society that ignores their suffering.
I am optimistic, however. In New Jersey, pedophiles are tagged with GPS to indicate their whereabouts. Dateline NBC is putting child predators on television. Never before have I witnessed such support for what is a problem: kids are being hurt and they are hurting society. Killing them when they do something wrong is precisely the same logic Todd applied when killing Danny. But, Todd was wrong. And so is society when releasing criminal child abusers who continue to abuse.

HunterBear said...

I can't agree with your assessment that no one should receive the death penalty. I will speak to four areas although I feel more exist. If you murder with premeditation, rape, kidnap, torture anyone or molest a child in any way, your life should be forfeited. And if any of your loved ones suffered ANY of these, I'm sure your view would change.

zzz said...

I find it hilarious that people think that the death penalty is an "easy way out." Are you daft? If someone told you you're going to die, that's a greater punishment than life in prison. Your days are numbered, and all you have to think about is the pain and misery you caused. Prisons are fucking universities for criminals, nothing more, nothing less. The only thing that needs to be changed is how death penalties are handled--restricting appeals and putting a set timeline that cannot be changed unless the person is found innocent.

CarrieJ said...

Actually, my very close family members have experienced some of those things, and it does not change my opinion.

Michael Boggess said...

Hello all,I'm Michael,Todds brother.First thing, Amanda SHUT UP,you cheated an lied just as much as my brother, so you matter NOT.And Kayliegh will someday know the truth,not your truth.There are many screwed up points to this whole ordeal.Todd only confessed to save his young girlfriend and once he got his thoughts in order he recanted his confession.He has gone thru many legal channels to get his "confession" thrown out but to no avail. He even asked for a lie detector test but was told "no,you allready confessed and that's all we need" and was never given the oppertunity to undergo the lie detector test. And why was there no forensic evidence? When arrested all involved agreed that Todd was wearing the same clothes as when he allegedly commited murder so why weren't his clothes and shoes taken for forensic testing? And if he beat Danny to death with this old splintering board then why were his hands in pristine condition? Why were eyewitnesses, who reported that they seen Todd asleep in Dannys' mustang when the murder was taking place, hidden and not revealed untill after the trial? How can you kill someone when you are sleeping? Or the fact that Melanis' boyfriend who wanted to join a gang that required a murder for initiation who lived less than 200 yards from the scene of the crime. Or that Melani was repeatedly picked up,by the police for being a runaway, at the same location as the crime. A place that niether Todd or Danny had ever been to. There were too many inconsistanceies during the investigation and trial. Jurors were lied to, witnesses hidden and proof "lost". He was railroaded before the trial ever started because the newspapers dubbed him "a murderous drifter from New Jersey" so he never had a chance at a fair trial. He did things wrong,no one is saying otherwise, but he did not kill Danny Pence and has been saying this since before the trial. Because of the abuse he suffered he was not on the same maturity level as his counterparts,Danny was 17 and Todd was 19. Todd had the operational maturity of a 13 or 14 year old and as we all know children of this age can rarely see the consequences of thier actions,ie;his confession. So Todd deserves a chance at a new trial and Dannys' family deserve the truth.