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Angela Corey, give him life, not death!

This petition had 32,642 supporters

I am Darlene Farah, mother of Shelby Farah. Shelby, who was 20 years old at the time, was murdered on July 20th, 2013 while working at a Metro-PCS store in Jacksonville, FL. James Xavier Rhodes was arrested for the murder, armed robbery and other charges by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office and is being prosecuted by State Attorney Angela Corey and her assistants.

Over my objections, the State Attorney’s Office is seeking the death penalty for Rhodes. Rhodes has been willing for the past year and a half to enter pleas of guilty in return for consecutive life sentences, without parole. Rhodes would waive all appeals, making it certain that he will spend the rest of his life in prison. I have repeatedly begged the prosecutors to accept this plea and have even told them Shelby, a beautiful, compassionate person, would not want the death penalty imposed in this case. My pleas to the prosecutor have fallen on deaf ears, with the State Attorney’s Office simply responding by saying that they want the death penalty.

I know that if a death sentence is obtained, there will be decades of appeals and motions and litigation and it is possible that Rhodes will never be executed. These are decades of nervousness and anxiety that my family and I would not have to suffer if the prosecutors accept the plea- a plea that ensures Rhodes remains in prison for the rest of his life. While this case has been proceeding, it has been difficult for me to find employment and the repeated court dates and hearings and the uncertainty involved have taken a toll on my family and me.   

No sentence imposed on Rhodes will ever bring my daughter Shelby back. Killing Rhodes would give me no satisfaction and provide no solace to my family. I simply wish to get whatever small measure of closure that is possible and be allowed to cherish the memories we have of Shelby’s life, rather than being focused on the decades of litigation over Rhodes’ death. I fear that State Attorney Angela Corey, who is running for reelection this year, is using my daughter’s senseless murder to prove how “tough on crime” she is, while ignoring the impact her decision has had on my family.

Please read my editorial for Time Magazine for more information:

Please consider supporting this petition encouraging State Attorney Angela Corey to abandon its desire to seek the death penalty for my daughter’s killer and allow me and my family to grieve and heal in peace.

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